SORTEDfood, the Mandeville Sisters, and Colin Furze attended Red Bull’s premiere for the documentary Kings of Content.
The documentary, which is being aired on Red Bull TV, focuses on the “quirky world of online video and explores how the phenomenon of content creation has turned the media industry on its head.” It features interviews with creators from across the community including Colin Furze, SORTEDFood, Rose Dix and Rosie Spaughton, Emma Blackery, and Louis Cole. The documentary looks at what makes a video or personality stand out and attract viewers and subscribers.
TenEighty spoke to Colin, plus SORTEDfood members Jamie Spafford, Mike Huttlestone, Ben Ebbrell, and Barry Taylor, about the importance of the documentary for creators. “I think you get to hear from people in a more coherent way than a video,” explained Jamie. “In a documentary setting, you can actually explain the thought process that goes into creating and the subtleties of it that wouldn’t necessarily come across if you just watched our videos.”
“It provides all the context around it, which is nice,” Mike added.
“Everything we do has happened by accident to some extent, it’s all wrapped up nicely to make it look like it was all done on purpose,” Barry continued.
Colin Furze mentioned that it’s also good to get an outsiders perspective on things. “When you think about it, I live in a bubble – I live in the Colin Furze YouTube bubble, and doing what I do takes up so much of my time, I don’t really get a chance to see what other people are doing. So when you see what other people are doing, and how they’re making their content work, that’s quite cool.”
— SORTEDfood (@sortedfood) April 11, 2017
The documentary tackles the struggle creators have in forging relationships with brands and the mainstream media. “I think it shows creators in a light that isn’t just idiots performing in front of a screen,” Jamie said. “It shows the thought process behind everything that we do, rather than just seeing four grown-up guys making dick jokes based around food. So our mission is to create all the tools that people need to learn how to cook, and the only way to be able to do that is to talk to people on our own level. I think that’s a scary thing for brands and mainstream media, because it takes the control away from them. A documentary like this shows that it is different to what you know, but that doesn’t mean that it’s wrong.”
Ben mentioned that the team SORTEDfood have built over the last few years are made up of their friends and family. “They’re great young professionals who are awesome at what they do. We come up with the ideas, we produce, we edit, we publish the content, so you kind of get the end-to-end package,” he commented. “Then we’re instantly publishing it to a community who have already bought into the idea because they helped create it, which is something that an agency fights for.”
For Colin, dealing with some brands has been a challenge. He shared one example where a brand wanted to take control of the content he made in order to maintain control. “They were like, ‘Yeah yeah, we love what you do, it’s really raw’, and they then wanted me to test their product, but they wanted me to do it in a studio where they could make it all glossy. I said that no-one would believe that because it’ll look faked, whereas if I do it myself people will believe it because it’s me doing what I normally do in my normal environment.”
— Red Bull UK (@RedBullUK) April 11, 2017
The screening of the documentary was followed by a short Q&A session with Colin, the SORTEDfood members, and Grace and Amelia Mandeville. Responding to a question regarding about YouTube’s model relative to TV’s, Mike mentioned that there is “an untapped honesty” within advertising, and the other panellists agreed. Mike then theorised that honesty in the future will bring a new wave of advertising as a result.
Kings of Content is available on demand at RedBull.tv or via the Red Bull TV app.
Read more about Colin Furze announcing his debut book. Alternatively, find out more about Lex Croucher and Rosianna Halse Rojas’s new podcast.