Oprah Winfrey Brings Back 'Favorite Things' & Other Celebrity Santa Clauses

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Oprah Winfrey Brings Back 'Favorite Things' & Other Celebrity Santa Clauses

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Oprah Winfrey

Whether motivated by low ratings or the rush of handing out free loot, Oprah Winfrey has decided to revive her "Favorite Things" show on OWN just in time for the holiday shopping season. Only this time, viewers at home and not just the studio audience will have a chance to win items from Winfrey's special stash.

During the years the chat queen's syndicated talk show ran on network television, "Oprah's Favorite Things" evolved into a massive giveaway in which every member of the studio audience went home with stuff the guru of good taste had deemed to be among her "favorite things" that year.

From 2002 to 2010 the "Oprah's Favorite Things" episode was the highest rated show of the year -- with the exception of 2009 when the segment did not run. (No reason was given for the one year gap, but most likely it was to avoid rubbing salt in the wounds of cash strapped viewers.)

Though "Favorite Things" began modestly the first year with items like hot chocolate powder and a talking photo album, by 2010 a delirious audience walked out of the TV studio with chits for diamond earrings, iPads and Volkswagen Beetles.

Oprah is not the only generous celebrity, however. Here are some other stars with a giving spirit.

Ellen DeGeneres Coughs Up College Money for Gay Boy Scout

When Ellen DeGeneres found out Boy Scout Ryan Andrese was denied his Eagle pin because he officially declared he was gay, the comedienne decided it was no laughing matter. She invited him on her talk show to commend him for having the courage to come out of the closet as a teenager. Topping off her tribute, a beaming Ellen gave the wannabe eagle a check for $20,000 from Shutterfly to apply toward his college education.

Keanu Reeves Donates His Own Money to Help Others

The "Matrix" actor is legendary for digging deep into his own pockets to help others. In one story told about the handsome star, he heard a crew member was having family problems and gave him a $20,000 Christmas bonus. He has also negotiated a movie deal in which he took less money so that the crew could earn more, possibly giving up as much as $75 million in personal profit.

Tyler Perry Buys Van for Fan

Just two weeks ago the "Madea" creator gave a Georgia fan with cerebral palsy a van after he learned her specially equipped vehicle had been stolen. The woman, who works as a greeter for Walmart, said her "mouth just dropped to the floor" when she heard Perry on the other end of the telephone.

As for Oprah, a few lucky fans at home will finally get to receive some of the goodies from her "Favorite Things" show just by sitting on the sofa and texting a special code.

More From This Contributor:

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