Shay Carl, a founder and one of the biggest stars on YouTube multichannel network Maker Studios, is launching an online video series inspired by and featuring clips culled from the quarter-century of America’s Funniest Home Videos episodes.
The series, called ShayFV, is part of a broader programming partnership between Maker and AFV creator Vin Di Bona Productions that will see some of Maker’s bigger YouTube stars appearing on AFV with host Tom Bergeron. The AFV audience each week also will be part of a new improvisational-comedy show called America’s Funniest Line that will run online at AFV’s official YouTube channel.
ShayFV launches Oct. 19, with each episode initially running on Maker’s online-video site Maker.TV and AFVs YouTube channel.
After a week, each episode will run on Carl’s own Shaytards YouTube channel. In each episode of about five minutes, Carl and his family of five young children re-enact classic AFV clips, then also watch a montage of other clips from the show. Carl also will encourage his followers to create their own videos for inclusion in future episodes.
“We don’t show as many clips, but they’re funny and they’re what I’m best known for, interacting with my kids,” said Carl. The resulting episodes – 17 are planned, six have been shot – triangulate somewhere between AFV, Mystery Science Theater 3000 and Shaytards, he said. Though the series’ episodes are long compared to most online video, they are short by Carl’s own standards, in part to encourage more viral sharing. His typical pieces on his other channels are 10 to 15 minutes long.
“This is just a great opportunity,” Carl said of working with Di Bona and the show’s deep library. “I grew up watching (America’s Funniest Home Videos). In hindsight, I really feel like I was influenced by that show to get the camera out and film my family.”
And film he has the past six years, running five YouTube channels, including Shaytards, which alone has about 2.4 million YouTube subscribers. All told, Carl lays claim to 1.2 billion views of his videos, making him part of YouTube’s exclusive billion-view club. He also co-founded Maker, which sold earlier this year to Disney in a deal worth up to $950 million. Last month, the Streamy Awards honored Carl as one of its first four “ICONS” for his online achievements.
Carl has been involved in other TV-related projects in the past, including a small cameo on the superhero show No Ordinary Family, but said, “I’ve always been on YouTube, and I will never jeopardize that” by leaving the medium behind for more traditional entertainment opportunities. With the Disney deal in hand, and several successful YouTube channels, he said, “I have the freedom to do that.”
ShayFV and America’s Funniest Line won’t be the only online initiatives between the two companies. Online comedians Jason Horton, Ceciley Jenkins and Ed Bassmaster will re-enact classic show clips in a new online series called AFV Do Overs.
Other online stars, including Sam Macaroni, Barely Political, Edward Vilderama, Very Good Listeners’ Brian Morgan and Brooke “Dodger” Lawson will appear on the broadcast show this season and provide after-show commentary that will appear on the show’s YouTube channel.