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Viral video success- the landlord

April 25, 2007

Will Ferrell’s Landlord film has been an incredible success, generating over 15 milion views in a short period of time. Interestingly, the film isn’t available on You Tube and can’t be embeded in other sites. The only way to view it is on Ferrell’s new site

Forbes Magazine has an interview with the’s founders.

Here are a couple of highlights.

I’m sure there’s something to the instantaneous piece of it too. This stuff doesn’t have to sit in development for years.

Absolutely. You just go do it. Grab a video camera and do it.
You don’t even write a script; you just get the beats for it and do two
takes, three takes at the most. And because of that, some of them
aren’t going to be great, and some are. But the whole spirit of it is,
Who cares, let’s just do stuff and have fun with it.

Do you see a trend emerging? Will other celebrities start to make their way online too?

Yeah. And I hope they do it in this way, kind of messing around
and loose. I think if celebrities start entering it with a team of
professionals, agents and executives, and the Internet short becomes
really thought out, I think instantly people will smell that out. So I
think the spirit of it has to be sort of screwing around, to be real
and not overly premeditated. If you want to see that, you go to big
movies or television–and that’s a great thing, but the Internet has a
looser form to it.

It’s surprising few celebrities have gone down this path, but we can obviously expect hundreds of films to be hitting the pipes in the next few months, to compete directly with user-created content. Celebrities clearly have the name recognition advantage and a fan base, but can they be as creative as everyday folk and can they generate more than one hit?

Again, it’s another example of doing more stuff, for less money and experimenting to see what sticks.

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