This summer, Anthony Padilla and Ian Hecox premiered their new film, “Smosh: The Movie”, at the Westwood Village Theater in Los Angeles. Supporting the Internet duo at their feature film debut was a collection of other YouTube and media stars.
Padilla and Hecox make up the YouTube channel “Smosh”, which boasts over 20 million subscribers. After their massive success online, the pair decided to star in their own feature film, directed by Alex Winter. Winter, a personal fan of “Smosh”, said he was attracted to the project because “it was an opportunity to work with people that I knew were creative, collaborative and fun.” The casting of the film was cooperative, as Winter primarily chose the actors, but he said that “we all worked together to choose YouTube stars for the movie because that is Anthony and Ian’s world.”
The transition from YouTube to Hollywood can also be seen in the release of “Bad Night”, a film staring Internet sensations Jenn McAllister and Lauren Elizabeth. For the two young stars, the biggest change is collaboration. “We’re used to doing everything by ourselves and in our bedrooms,” said McAllister. “The movie involved a lot of other people and we had less control than normal.”
Padilla and Hecox also experienced changes when switching between media styles. “We don’t have the instant gratification once we finish a project. We shot this movie over a year ago and it is now just coming out to the public,” replied Hecox. Padilla exclaimed, “The NPAA’s rating was shocking. We always thought that we created PG-13 videos, but apparently what we think is PG-13 is not what they think, so we learned the fun way.”
As the influence of the Internet continues to increase, a growing number of teens and adults look to YouTube to spread their image around the globe. Current stars on the site, Ricky Dillon and Mahogany Lox, have advice for these newcomers. As the screams of her devoted fans rise, Lox clearly states that the most important thing is “to never be scared and always be who you are.” She shares a strong connection with each of her supporters and “feels like they are all best friends.” Since starting his career in 2010, Ricky Dillon has faced his fair share of criticism. For those who have less experience with it, he says that “if it’s not constructive criticism, just ignore it. Do what you love and take the genuine help, while ignoring the hate comments.”