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Family Who Spent $100K On Beanie Babies In The '90s Has More Crazy Stories To Tell, Says Son

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A 24-year-old whose family spent $100,000 on Beanie Babies in the '90s as a college investment, but instead went bankrupt, made a film about his family's obsession; he says it's just one of many stories he could tell about them.

Angeleno Chris Robinson made the short film Bankrupt by Beanies in 2009, about how the once-collectible critters paved the way to his family's financial downfall. In a new interview with Dazed Digital, he admits he's sick of the things himself, and that the craze was mostly driven by his father's obsession.

"This is like admitting to a drug addiction," his father, also called Chris, confesses in the opening scene of the film, talking about how easy it was to start collecting when the $5 stuffed animals were being re-sold for $65.

Robinson says his father went to some extreme lengths to obtain the latest Beanies in Los Angeles of the '90s.

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My dad always had a man on the inside that would let him know when new stuff was coming in. I'm pretty sure they held a stake in Ty [the company that manufactured them], because there were many times that my dad would go even further than usual and buy fifty instead of the usual five, all based on some "hot tip" he got about whatever new Beanies were coming out. He would load up the Suburban with every neighbor kid he could find and head down to the local Hallmark store with a wad of ten-dollar bills in his pocket. Everyone was instructed to not acknowledge each other and just get in and out as fast as possible. After we loaded up at one store we would just head to the next and repeat the process over and over.

Robinson said he's now "apathetic" about the Beanies. "We can just burn them for warmth in the event of the Apocalypse," he jokes.

The family never tried to sell any of its vast collection because the toys had already plummeted in value.

Robinson is surprised at the attention being given to his film and said he prefers the other short film he made, Bastard: An Illegitimate Film, "has much more potential for a feature treatment since it focuses on my dad's many eccentricities throughout his life instead of this relatively short period of our family history."

As he explains in the description on Vimeo, the 2010 short documentary "explores the romances, the breakups, and most importantly the nine children from six separate relationships that resulted from his father's constant need of a woman at his side." That film opens with Robinson calling a half-sister who's not aware of his existence and introducing himself, then holding up a clapboard that reads "Bastard" in front of his father's face.

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Robinson said he'd be open to dramatizing the Beanie Baby film for the big screen: "I have adapted parts of both Bankrupt and Bastard into a television drama pilot. Being at the bottom of the writers' room ladder I don't expect it to go anywhere for a while, but if things work out in my career, the Beanie story could be expanded in a dramatized form in the future."