Announcing the NewTeeVee Top 10 Breakout Video Stars of 2008

27 Comments

Felicia Day

If scripted web series had a poster girl in 2008, it was definitely Felicia Day. First, the actress/writer/producer created her own show, The Guild, from bottom up, and by developing funny and original characters while also tapping into the popular niche community of World of Warcraft afficionados, the show developed such a wildly loyal fanbase that the production costs of its last seven episodes were paid entirely by viewer donations.

Then, Joss Whedon (who had previously cast her in the seventh season of Buffy the Vampire Slayer) saw what she was up to and thought it looked like fun — thus leading him to sink a large chunk of his own cash into producing Dr. Horrible’s Sing-a-Long Blog, starring Day as love interest to both Nathan Fillion and Neil Patrick Harris. (Whedon asked Day to participate via a cryptic email reading simply “Can you sing? -J.”)

All this success means that Day is now a hot commodity, making guest spots on the TV series House and Roommates, and selling Cheetoes and bright red washer/dryers in various ad spots. And season 2 of The Guild, now under production, is currently in negotiations to secure financing — without Day and co-producer Kim Evey having to sell the rights to the show, which Day was determined not to do. Those seeking to use web video to further their careers could do much worse than to emulate her example — but the most important thing they should take note of is her friendly and open interaction with fans. Day knows exactly what she owes the nerds. Mainly because she is one herself.

(Liz Shannon Miller)

27 Comments

noname

Watching Vaynerchuk is like a master class in brand building (a very hyperactive master class). The guy sticks to his message, engages with his community and constantly works to promote himself across every new platform available. He even squeezed in a video show during a recent flight on Southwest Airlines. No wonder we named him one of our 2008 Breakout Video Stars.

Steve

I watched one of the funniest shows today and this guy will be on the list next year for sure.

Statix.tv
GamerGuru

Cheers,
Steve

JenniPowell

“Those seeking to use web video to further their careers could do much worse than to emulate her example — but the most important thing they should take note of is her friendly and open interaction with fans.”

Took the words right outta my mouth…

Rosa Sow

great list. It seems like the stuff that is taking off is highly focused and concept driven. can’t wait to see who makes the list next year!

Matt Enlow

I love that Conan towers over Gary. If Conan gets too annoyed, he can just squish Gary under his heel like an angry giant.

Eric Curtis

Felicia Day = Awesome. I can’t wait for the second season of The Guild.

I’m going to check out a few of those that I haven’t heard about before.

Congrats to all!

confused charlie

felicia day is amazing but i have to ask– what does buck DOOOOOOOO???!?!?!?!

Jeff

Hey Liz, great choices! Of these breakout video stars, any insights into their business success (e.g. advertising, e-commerce)? Thanks.

Buck

Yay!
Thanks guys!
I can’t believe this is the video you posted! Yikes!
I think I may have to give the award back based on this!
HAHAHHAHAHHAHA
See you soon!
Buck

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