Burbank, CA – August 5, 2016 – Legendary Digital Studios today announced that it has partnered with YouTube to release THE THINNING, a feature-length thriller starring digital influencer Logan Paul and Disney Channel star Peyton List, on YouTube Red. The film will debut on YouTube’s subscription service later this year, giving some of social media’s biggest stars a rare opportunity to engage their powerful fan bases with exciting, studio-quality digital content in a narrative format.
Paul and List’s social following combined with those of co-stars Lia Marie Johnson (Emmy® winning series “Kids React”), Calum Worthy (“Austin & Ally”), Ryan Newman (“The Thundermans”) and director Michael Gallagher (“Internet Famous”) give the film a social footprint of more than 51 million followers, one of the largest collective social followings of any digital film produced thus far. Paul (“Foursome”) is a well-known Vine star with over 26 million followers in total. List, best known for the hit Disney Channel television series “Jessie,” has over 12 million followers across social platforms and is the current star of Disney Channel’s “Bunk’d.”
THE THINNING takes place in a dying world where population control is dictated by an aptitude test in high school. When two students (Paul and List) discover the test is all smoke and mirrors hiding a larger conspiracy, they go against the system to expose it and take it down.
“We are thrilled to partner with YouTube Red to release THE THINNING,” said Greg Siegel, Senior Vice President of Development and Production for Legendary Digital Studios. “The platform gives our film an exciting opportunity to connect with a huge audience of digitally native fans eager to see their favorite performers in high-end content in a proven genre.”
“We know our audience will be captivated by the film’s suspenseful storytelling and brave characters as they fight for survival,” said Susanne Daniels, Global Head of Original Content, YouTube. “THE THINNING will be the first feature length thriller that we are releasing on YouTube Red, and we believe it has all of the elements to be wildly popular with our fans.”
THE THINNING is directed by Michael Gallagher, with a script written by him and Steve Greene. Gallagher, Greene and producing partner Jana Winternitz were the winners of Legendary’s House of Horrors short film program — a global joint initiative launched with YouTube Spaces to find emerging creative talent and filmed on sets inspired by award-winning director Guillermo Del Toro. The winning short film from the group, which is also behind the popular TotallySketch YouTube channel, was selected out of over 150 submissions. Gallagher and Winternitz produced THE THINNING alongside partner Michael Wormser through their Cinemand label in partnership with production company Kids at Play.
This is the latest project from Legendary Digital Studios, which most recently announced a partnership with Square Enix on a digital series adaptation of award winning video game, Life Is Strange; and also released ELECTRA WOMAN & DYNA GIRL starring YouTube phenomenons Grace Helbig and Hannah Hart through Fullscreen and Sony Pictures Home Entertainment. Crackle also recently premiered Legendary Digital Studios’ DEAD RISING: ENDGAME, a sequel to DEAD RISING: WATCHTOWER, both feature-length films based on Capcom’s worldwide hit video game series Dead Rising and starring Jesse Metcalfe (“Dallas”) and Dennis Haysbert (“24”) in both films. Legendary will continue to feed this steady stream of content with more digital films and series to be produced, acquired and distributed throughout 2016 and beyond.
YouTube Red is a paid membership that enables a premium YouTube + music experience. Members get all of YouTube uninterrupted, a premium YouTube Music experience, and exclusive access to new original series and movies from top YouTube creators. YouTube Red is currently available in the United States, New Zealand and Australia with plans for additional international expansion throughout 2016.