The list of weird ways to make money has career paths that are hard to craft. PEZ smugglers.
PEZ, small candy tablets packed in colorful dispensers, have collectors who pay very high prices for rare pieces. And Steve Glew was more than happy to attend and donate supplies.
A new documentary, The Pez Outlaw, chronicles the story of small-town Michigan man Glew. Glew made millions of dollars smuggling his rare PEZ candy dispensers from Eastern Europe to the United States.
“In 11 years, I made $4.5 million,” Glew told ABC News Prime’s Linsey Davis. He recalled one shipment of PEZ dispensers worth $500,000.
Glew acquired it directly from the European factory that made the PEZ dispenser and sold it to collectors in the United States. In some cases, thousands of dollars each.
This documentary elaborately recreates incidents from Glew’s career as a so-called PEZ outlaw in the 1990s. This includes encounters with the police and eventually with a person called “Pezident” who is the head of US distribution for his Pez Corporation. work.
When asked if he knew what he was doing could get him into trouble, he told ABC News, “Yes, absolutely. But I haven’t thought about it.”
One of the film’s directors, Amy Vandrien Stokel, told ABC News that her team first heard about “Pez Outlaws” in a news article and eventually ended up with Glew, which he has maintained for the past 20 years. He said he found the blog of
“Our reaction was that the whole thing was a little too crazy to be true,” she said. .
At that point, she said, “I just found this to be a great story.”
The film also covers the more personal aspects of Glew’s life, such as his financial struggles and mental health.
Grew, who participated in the film’s production and starred in a dramatic reenactment, said he was “really happy” that mental health issues made it into the film’s final cut.
“People need to talk more about what they’re going through,” he said, adding, “I’m trying to teach people to talk. Don’t lock it up or hide it.”
Storkel told ABC News, “‘The Pez Outlaw’ is ‘the movie the world needs right now.'”
“this [film] It gives me hope and inspiration,” she said.