How to Be “Internet Famous” with Michael Gallagher & Steve Greene

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  • Poking fun at YouTube culture is one of our favorite pastimes here at What’s Trending, so it was great to get a chance to talk to the creators of “Internet Famous,” a new movie that will have web-savvy viewers nodding their heads and outsiders despairing for humanity.

    Our host Shira Lazar sat down with writer/director Michael Gallagher and writer/actor Steve Greene on the What’s Trending Podcast to get all the details.

  • Starring Shane Dawson as a rather Bart Baker-esque parody king, the film is about five internet stars who enter a talent competition to get their own TV show — but the problem is, they have no real talent beyond racking up millions of views and attracting hordes of teenage fans.

    Other contenders for internet fame include Steve’s character, a guy with a prank show called “That’s One Scared Baby” in which he terrifies his infant daughter; Amanda Cerny as a “feminist comedian” who wears low-cut tops and has a 95% male fanbase; a Serious Filmmaker who only makes videos about his cat; and a girl who went viral for doing a weird dance on camera and now can’t escape her meme status.

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  • Steve explained that the film is a mockumentary comedy in the vein of Lonely Island’s “Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping” or the Christopher Guest movie “Best in Show.”

    “What’s great about [Guest] is you don’t have to know anything about the subject matter to know what he’s commenting on. That’s one of the major things we were trying to do with ‘Internet Famous,’ is make it so people who don’t know the internet can still watch it and understand, because we take their hand and walk them through what it is a little bit.”

    Michael added:

    “And if you’re obsessed with the internet and spend your whole life online watching YouTubers, Viners, Instagram stars,,… Someone like Shira Lazar, this is the movie for you. And it will also make fun of you!”

    In many ways it’s a cautionary tale about letting your followers and view count go to your head and inflate your ego. Michael said he’s noticed that trend in YouTube’s clique mentality. “It’s been really fascinating to see the most famous person in a group will be the de facto leader, and everyone’s like ‘What do you want to do? We’ll do whatever you want to do, for as long as you want! Can you just tag me in that photo?’”

    The movie also encourages accidental viral stars like Tay Zonday to have a sense of humor and keep things in perspective. “It’s either are you going to embrace the thing that you didn’t intend to be known for, or are you going to fight against it? I think the movie argues that you should embrace who you are and what you are; you shouldn’t try and live in a world where you think what you’re doing is so great.”

    Along with behind-the-scenes stories about the making of the film, we also got Steve and Michael’s thoughts on the latest trending topics, like the #SaveMarinaJoyce campaign and people naming their babies after Pokemon Go characters. And don’t miss their guide on how to be Internet Famous in five easy steps:

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  • You can listen to the full podcast on Soundcloud, or download it on iTunes.

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