4TH UPDATE, MAY 26: The trailer for the upcoming NBC series This Is Us has hit another milestone, crossing the 50 million views mark on Facebook, and doing it in just 11 days. Factoring in additional views on YouTube, Moviefone’s Facebook post and elsewhere, the trailer for the new series has been watched almost 70 million times. The total does not include plays on nbc.com. Taking that into account, the trailer’s viewership is estimated to be between 70 million and 80 million. Those are staggering totals that not only dwarf any new series trailer, they put the low-key ensemble dramedy with no famous title, mega stars or special effects into blockbuster movie territory.
For the two months before the release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, its official trailer garnered 13.5 million views on Facebook. It was far more popular on YouTube, where it registered 71 million views. Still, This Us is on course to top The Force Awakens’ 84 million views total within days. Almost three months after the official trailer for this summer’s tentpole Ghostbusters was released, it has amassed 23.5 million views on Facebook and 32.7 million on YouTube, a total that This Is Us already has eclipsed in fraction of the time.
And because the bulk of the views for This Is Us come from Facebook, its popularity has been driven mainly by word of mouth as people share it with family and friends.
3RD UPDATE, MAY 23: It was a 10 million-view weekend for the trailer of new NBC dramedy This Is Us, which jumped from 30 million to 40 million streams on Facebook alone Saturday through Sunday. Its total nears 60 million views across all platforms, including YouTube and nbc.com.
2ND UPDATE, May 20: Another day, another viewership milestone for the trailer promoting NBC’s upcoming dramedy series This Is Us. The trailer just crossed the 30 million mark on Facebook. With the additional play on YouTube and NBC.com, I hear the trailer would get to 50 million views total soon.
UPDATE, May 19: This Is Us continues to defy gravity — it just crossed the 25 million views mark on Facebook. And the ensemble comedy about a group of thirtysomethings, did it in four days, a feat never accomplished by a rookie show. (Keep in mind, the previous record for most views amassed by a new series trailer during premiere week was 4.1 million for DC’s Legends of Tomorrow last year). Additionally, This Is Us, which has no title people would recognize or a big star at the center, surpassed the trailer for Fox’s Prison Break event series (currently at 22 million) to rank as the most watched trailer this upfront week. What’s more, the trailer, which does not reveal the big twist in the pilot, is showing few signs of slowing down.
PREVIOUS, MAY 17: This Is Us is off to a hot start. The trailer for the new NBC dramedy series from Dan Fogelman and 20th TV is nearing 15 million views on Facebook a little over 48 hours after it was released. That shatters the record for most Facebook video views of a new-show trailer during the seven days of upfront week, posted by the CW’s Legends Of Tomorrow last year (4.1 million). The trailer for NBC’s high-profile new time-travel drama series Timeless, which was released at the same time as This Is Us, is at 4 million. Facebook native video was first introduced during the 2014 upfront.
With this speed, the trailer for This Is Us would cross the 20 million mark by end of day today or early tomorrow (you can watch it above). It also has amassed almost 2 million views on YouTube, in addition to those on NBC.com, which the network does not disclose.
This Is Us, which follows an ensemble, some of them sharing the same birthday, whose life stories intertwine in curious ways, is resonating with fans; there is a high level of shares and favorable reactions and comments.
Additionally, the viewership for the This is Us trailer keeps growing fast and has narrowed the gap with the trailer for Fox’s Prison Break event series, which is at 19 million views on Facebook. As can be expected for the revival of a popular show, the Prison Break trailer exploded when it was posted yesterday. For This Is Us, the traction seems to come from word of mouth as this is an original concept with no underlying property people would recognize, no high concept or special effects, making the trailer’s success even more impressive (and surprising).