Mana Mai Tai Meme Factory Launches
Going viral. It's the internet's top prize, like winning the online lottery, the dream of nearly every artist, media maker and marketer on the web.
This Thanksgiving holiday weekend, the teaser trailer for next year's new "Star Wars" movie went viral. It was everywhere. A mere 90 seconds of footage watched by millions of people, and generating endless volumes of enthusiasm and cynicism alike. And ready to ride that massive wave of fandom is "The Farce Awakens."
Yes, it's the "Force Awakens" trailer translated into internet speak, from Nyan Cat to Lord of the Rings. After all, one solid recipe for going viral is combining several memes. The parody video was posted today as the first official piece of original content from the Mana Mai Tai Company.
Mana Mai Tai is a "geek content troupe" founded by husband-and-wife photographers Ed White and Dallas Nagata White, and visual effects and motion graphics artist Gabriel Yanagihara. Additional collaborators include Civil Beat community manager Gene Park, "web and video junkie" Kaeo Kepani, Charlie Shackford, Randall Parabicoli, and others.
The team already has experience going viral, including getting links on the front page of Reddit (which declares itself "the front page of the internet"). For Ed and Dallas, a post about Dallas' "Halo" costume garnered over 3,300 votes, and another for "Assasin's Creed" got over 2,700 votes. Lava photos are also surefire hits. Gabe, meanwhile, has done well with posts about Oculus and Minecraft.
Now, they hope to turn their frequent viral successes into a solid hit factory.
"If you guys have heard of Rooster Teeth or Penny Arcade, that's kind of where we want to go with Mana Mai Tai," Ed explains.
As for their first video?
"It's also our prediction of what the internet will do -- is doing -- with the Star Wars franchise," he says. "Hence the tag line, 'Disney brings Star Wars to a new generation. A new generation plasters it with internet memes.'"
Indeed, the Manu Mai Tai video will be going up against the first apparent winner in the "Star Wars" trailer tributes: "Lego Star Wars: Episode VII."
Wherever the Mana Mai Tai Co. goes, they're worth following. You can sign up on their website to receive an email newsletter featuring original content on geek and gaming culture. You can also follow the troupe on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Instagram., and Google+.
While we wait for their next creative brainstorm, there's always "The Farce Awakens."