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'Girls Gone Wild' wants 'Idol' Barba

LOS ANGELES, March 7 (UPI) -- If the "American Idol" gig flames out for her, New Jersey's Antonella Barba apparently can just walk on over to the wild side without skipping a beat.

"Girls Gone Wild" founder and CEO Joe Francis said in a news release Wednesday he is offering Barba $250,000 to become a host for the video company, which found its niche by catching college-age women baring their breasts on film.

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"Antonella Barba is an unbelievably sexy girl who obviously knows how to have a good time," said Francis, whose company, Mantra Films Inc., is based in Los Angeles. "Why are people being ridiculed and punished for being sexual? It's ridiculous."

Barba has made her way to the final eight female contestants on this year's sixth edition of "American Idol." But her notoriety has multiplied exponentially with the appearance of steamy photos of her on the Internet. Francis said he doesn't think Barba and celebrities such as Katie Rees, Paris Hilton and Britney Spears should be labeled "bad girls."

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"There's a little 'Girls Gone Wild' in every woman," said Francis, "and this should be embraced as a positive, not a negative."

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