The constant evolution of online media is an unstoppable force. Canadians are constantly consuming media through an increasing number of forums. One of the most prevalent sources of media output is YouTube, which has over 1 billion unique users visiting the site every month. More and more, we are seeing people’s talents being discovered on YouTube (Justin Bieber, Tyler Mahone and Carly Ray Jepson). This past year we saw a new development in the online film industry, using YouTube as a stepping stone onto something much larger. Three noteworthy YouTube vloggers: Mamrie Hart (You Deserve A Drink) , Grace Helbig (it’sGrace) and Hannah Hart (My Drunk Kitchen), have created a full length feature movie that was completely self funded and self resourced. The movie, Camp Takota, stars the 3 YouTube personalities, and is directed by fellow YouTubers Nick and Chris Riedell.
A key component to this production is that complete control lies in the hands of the creators. The film is sold on the Camp Takota website, where fans can also purchase camp related theme packages and various merchandise. With their branding campaign in top notch shape and their undeniable skills in front of and behind the camera, we are privy to seeing what this kind of creative process is capable of: leading us to question if this is the new direction movies are heading. We have already seen a major shift with big blockbusters being funded by major stars instead of studios (prime example: Wolf of Wall Street funded by Leo DiCaprio to avoid studio restrictions). Is self production the next big thing? Will a large majority of the film making and production industry become obsolete? Or, will the industry become so saturated with “stars” and movies, that we will lose the creation of big blockbusters? Only time will tell, but be sure to watch for more vloggers to follow the footsteps of Camp Takota.