YouTube star PewDiePie has launched his own video talent network RevelMode with the aid of Maker Studios, the YouTube network owned by Disney.
RevelMode will see PewDiePie work with a host of fellow YouTube stars of his choosing on a range of original content, including shows, games, music, clothes, and animations. According to Maker Studios, PewDiePie’s talent network includes a roster of YouTube celebs that together boast over 100 million subscribers across social networks such as Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram, Twitter, and, of course, YouTube.
The RevelMode lineup includes CinnamonToastKen (Ken Morrison), CutiePieMarzia (Marzia Bisognin), Dodger (Brooke Lawson), EmmaBlackery (Emma Blackery), JackSepticEye (Sean McLoughlin), Jelly (Jelle van Vucht), Kwebbelkop (Jordi van den Bussche), and Markiplier (Mark Fischbach).
This isn’t the first time PewDiePie (real name Felix Kjellberg) has branched out to create content for third-parties. Last year it was announced that Kjellberg along with the producers of The Walking Dead were to launch an original series entitled Scare PewDiePie.
In Kjellberg’s own words, networks are the main source of income for many YouTubers. In the launch video for RevelMode (see above), Kjellberg calls his time with Maker Studios a “rollercoaster ride,” perhaps indicating that it has been a bumpy experience. Nonetheless, Kjellberg successfully renegotiated his contract with the Disney-backed network in 2014, and it is thought RevelMode was part of the terms. Analysts have compared the move to recording industry practices, specifically the creation of a sub-label by a larger corporation. Kjellberg even notes that the backing of Maker Studios may be a double-edged sword as it could see RevelMode lose its “hipster cred.” He assured viewers, however, that the overall attitude of the new network would be fan-driven, creating “anything that’s awesome in the eyes of the fans.”
PewDiePie is arguably the biggest Internet star, boasting 41 million subscribers to his YouTube channel. The 26-year-old Swede can mostly be seen playing games on the video platform, where his clips generate views in their millions. He is also ranked the highest earning YouTube star, having made $12 million for the year ending June 1, 2015.