Last Year was a big one for actor turned filmmaker Alex Winter. Not only did he make his triumphant return as wannabe rock star William S. Preston, Esquire in the long-awaited comedy sequel Bill & Ted Face the Music, but he also directed two documentaries that saw release in 2020, with the Hollywood child actor expose Showbiz Kids followed by Zappa, which took a deep dive into the life of the icon musician. A moviemaking machine, Alex Winter has now announced his next directorial project with Mass Effect: The Story of YouTube.
Valhalla Entertainment and Trouper Productions have officially commenced production on the upcoming documentary, Mass Effect: The Story Of YouTube. Directed by Alex Winter (Bill & Ted Face The Music, Showbiz Kids, The Panama Papers, Zappa), the feature documentary takes the viewer on a gripping journey from the humble beginnings of YouTube, starting with its creation in the attic of a pizzeria to its explosion onto the world stage, becoming the largest media platform in history and sparking a cultural revolution. In the third quarter of 2020 alone, YouTube brought in $5 billion and now boasts more than 30 million music and premium paid subscribers.
Mass Effect is an acquisition title with CAA Media Finance handling sales. The narrative will be produced by Winter, Gale Anne Hurd (The Terminator, Aliens, The Walking Dead), and Glen Zipper (Undefeated, Challenger: Final Flight, What's My Name: Muhammad Ali, Zappa), with Phillip Kobylanski serving as the production executive for Valhalla Entertainment. Olive Hill Media (WeWork: Or The Making and Breaking of a $47 Billion Unicorn), XRM Media and TIME Studios will finance the project. Michael Cho and Tim Lee will executive produce for Olive Hill Media. Said Alex Winter in the press release.
"I'm very excited to be partnering with Gale Anne Hurd and my long-time producing partner Glen Zipper on this film. I've been eager to make another tech-related documentary, and the rise of YouTube is one of the most significant cultural and business stories of our time."
Said Gale Anne Hurd.
"Mass Effect is both an inspirational and cautionary tale as it examines how YouTube has made our lives easier and more enriched, while also presenting dangers that make the world a more perilous place. At this extraordinary moment in history between fake news and an unprecedented pandemic, YouTube has been at the center of it all, for better and for worse."
Mass Effect: The Story Of YouTube will investigate and penetrate deep into the heart of our present predicaments with issues like online radicalization, surveillance, algorithmic capitalism, the proliferation of misinformation and, of course, cat videos. Mass Effect will be at times thrilling, terrifying and hilarious, but always highly compelling, and above all, entertaining. This is a world populated by some of the most brilliant minds in technology, business, media, and politics, and we have exclusive access to all of the key players. Said Sue Turley, Head of Development, XRM Media.
"Michael Y. Chow and I jumped at the chance to work with Alex Winter, Gale Anne Hurd, Glen Zipper and the entire all-star producing team, to bring the incredible inspiring YouTube story to the masses. We are honored to be joining forces with CAA, Olive Hill Media, and TIME Studios."
Said Olive Hill Media's Michael Cho.
"We are thrilled to be working with this talented team of filmmakers along with our strong producing partners to bring this timely film to audiences around the world," said Olive Hill Media's Michael Cho. We continue our mission to work with visionary creators like the team assembled for Mass Effect, and we look forward to further exploring the disruptive trends that shape today's pop culture".
"TIME Studios is thrilled to join with the incredible creative team and partners for this important project, which furthers our mission of creating content that examines macro issues impacting our global society," said Ian Orefice, President of TIME Studios.