8 items from 2016
A documentary that goes inside the lives and careers of YouTube stars is now available. It’s called Vlogumentary, and it’s available to YouTube Red subscribers through the YouTube channel of vlogger Shay Carl.
Vlogumentary, which has been in production for years, is the latest in an ever-growing series of films that discuss the growth of the online video industry and the ways in which the relationships between creators and their fans have evolved over time. The doc, directed by Matthew Testa and produced by Shay Carl along with Morgan Spurlock (of Super Size Me fame) discusses several well-known events in the 11-year history of YouTube. It talks about Charles Trippy’s daily vlog streak, the launch of fan conventions like VidCon, and much more in between. Along the way, viewers receive insights from some of the most popular creators on the Internet, including Joey Graceffa, Glozell, and Hank Green. »
- Sam Gutelle
Before the Ice Bucket Challenge, there was “Super Size Me.” When little-known filmmaker Morgan Spurlock challenged himself to eat at McDonald’s for every meal, three times a day, for thirty days straight, he anticipated the era of viral marketing with purpose. The documentary grossed $11.5 million theatrically in 2004 and ignited an international conversation about the fast food industry.
By appearing in his film as subject and narrator, Spurlock popularized a kind of personality-driven commentary that is now regularly found in another format — video blogging, or “vlogging.” And that’s why he’s a good fit to produce “Vlogumentary,” the first feature film to explore one of the more ubiquitous ways that personalities develop on the site.
The film not only offers fans an intimate look at their favorite vloggers, but also demystifies the strange career path for would-be skeptics. »
- Jude Dry
News that Time Warner has bought a 10% stake in Hulu for $583 million, but no seat on the board, created a bit of a tizzy in streaming-media circles these past several days. While it’s notable that Time Warner is making yet another significant investment in yet another corner of the online-media universe, that’s not even this sector’s most fascinating news of the past month.
Just consider these developments, all more telling about the future of entertainment to my mind than the Time Warner - Hulu deal, loaded as it is with Hulu’s complicated management structure, owner ambivalences, and eternally shifting business plan:
Alphabet/Google/YouTube is venturing into original programming in a big way, as first announced at VidCon, where it trumpeted a series with Channing Tatum and Jenna Dewan Tatum, based on the Step Up dance movies. At last week’s Television Critics Association meetings, YouTube »
- David Bloom
YouTube CEOSusan Wojcicki’s 2016 VidCon keynote delivered a simple message: If you’ve felt marginalized and seek community, come to us.
“YouTube gives people of any race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, disability, or interest a place to come together and a place to belong,” she said, emphasizing the importance of community to YouTube’s success. “When people talk about community, especially when they’re here at VidCon, the first thing they often mention are the screaming fans… But what I hope you take away when you visit VidCon isn’t just the enthusiasm, it’s the sense of belonging that exists here.”
To present YouTube’s programming slate, Wojcicki yielded the stage to Susanne Daniels, YouTube’s Global Head of Original Content, who outlined the four major projects upcoming from YouTube Red, the company’s original content subscription service, and eight new series in development. The centerpiece is a partnership »
- Judith Dry
While Shay Carl Butler is often thought to be the forefather of modern vlogging, it was actually his wife, Colette, who fired up a vlogging camera for the first time -- capturing her husband as he danced around their living room in a black-and-blue unitard. This clip -- and Butler’s snazzy attire -- subsequently inspired the name of their 4 million-subscribers-strong channel, the Shaytards.
This is just one of many insights to be found in Vlogumentary, a feature documentary about the rise of YouTube’s vlogging community, which was announced back in 2013 and premiered last night at the Tribeca Film Festival.
Butler began working on the film with fellow creator Corey Vidal, and the two subsequently raised more than $200,000 from 5,400 Indiegogo donors. In 2015, they brought famed documentarian Morgan Spurlock on board, who agreed to produce the film.
While Vlogumentary features interviews with more than 50 bold-faced YouTubers, the film shines a »
- Geoff Weiss
If social influencers and digital filmmakers needed more proof that they were bound to disrupt the traditional film and television industries, here’s more: for the first time, the 15th annual Tribeca Film Festival has announced an exclusive event to tout the burgeoning space.
Kicking off tonight with a screening of the long-anticipated Shay Carl-starring, Morgan Spurlock-produced Vlogumentary, the Tribeca Film Festival’s inaugural Digital Creators Market takes place tomorrow. During the event, online content creators like Jon Cozart, Mikey Murphy, Ingrid Nilsen, and Meghan Tonjes will connect with buyers, producers, and agents to discuss potential content ventures.
The event is also slated to feature a lineup of high-profile screenings, including YouTube Red’s Sing It! and Fullscreen’s Electra Woman & Dyna Girl. The Vlogumentary screening is particularly pertinent given that the film aims to cover the very rise of digital creators that the inaugural Market reflects.
“For any filmmaker, »
- Geoff Weiss
At this year’s 15th Tribeca Film Festival, attendees can lose themselves in a virtual-reality psychedelic dance party, learn about living in a wireless future, or watch the complete 7½-hour miniseries of “O.J.: Made in America” — oh yeah, and watch some movies, too.
Don’t call it simply a film festival — call it a “storytelling” festival, say Tff organizers of the event running April 13-24.
Originally founded in 2002 to reenergize a moribund Lower Manhattan in the wake of 9/11, Tribeca has gone through many iterations over the years (i.e., red-carpet magnet, VOD acquisition market, documentary launchpad). But it may have finally carved out an identity of its own as a next-gen new-media haven.
Tribeca still shows about 100 feature films, which matches previous years, but »
- Anthony Kaufman
Tribeca Film Festival director Genna Terranova on Thursday unveiled an inaugural market and screening series geared towards showcasing digital and online work and connecting creators with buyers, producers and agents.
Special Screenings continue the following day with a sneak peek of new episodes from Legendary and Fullscreen’s update of Sid & Marty Kroft’s Electra Woman & Dyna Girl starring YouTube sensations Grace Helbig and Hannah Hart, as well as Maker Studios and New Form »
- email@example.com (Jeremy Kay)
8 items from 2016
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