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Many big media companies are still trying to figure out how to cash in on the internet, but for some talented and lucky individuals, the internet has proven to be the perfect place to cash in on big media.

Recently, I wrote about the success realized by the creator of Sh*t My Dad Says. Thanks to a 700,000 strong following on Twitter, 28 year-old Justin Halpern was able to land a book deal and television comedy project before he hit 100 tweets.

But Halpern's big break looks incredibly small compared to that of Uruguayan filmmaker Fede Alvarez. According to the BBC, he has been offered a $30m contract to produce a Hollywood sci-fi film for Sam Raimi’s Ghost House Pictures. Raimi, of course, is well-known for his work on the Spiderman films and Evil Dead series.

Who is Alvarez? Alvarez is a professional (one blog describes him as "an FX guy and commercial director"), but you (and the rest of the world) hadn't heard of him before. How did he land such a deal? One word: YouTube.

Alvarez produced a 4 minute and 48 second short film entitled 'Ataque de Panico!', embedded below. In it, robots invade Montevideo and destroy the city. It's an impressive piece of work, and looks like something produced in Hollywood.

Yet Alvarez reportedly only spent $300 producing it, and thanks to the viral nature of YouTube, it has attracted over one and a half million views. The quality and the popularity of Alvarez's short film were apparently enough to convince all of Hollywood that Alvarez is hot stuff. That led to the whopping $30m deal that's being reported.

Needless to say, if the deal goes through, Alvarez might just have one of the biggest internet success stories in the world of entertainment. And it's another example of how talented people can use the internet to promote their work. Sometimes it leads to great stories like this. Stories themselves worthy of their own Hollywood movies perhaps.

Photo credit: DominusVobiscum via Flickr.

Patricio Robles

Published 18 December, 2009 by Patricio Robles

Patricio Robles is a tech reporter at Econsultancy. Follow him on Twitter.

2390 more posts from this author

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Mike Stenger

Mike Stenger, MikeStenger.com

Times are changing Patricio, that's for sure. I remember when they announced that Sh*t my dad says had a TV deal. My mouth about dropped. Some of the stuff he said was funny but man, for a TV deal? It just goes to show that people should keep an open mind and hustle as much as possible with social media while building relationships and an audience.

over 6 years ago

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Sahdev Singh Rathore

Beautiful work Patricio. Your cretivity really made this 4:48 minute movie better than any other 90 minutes movie. I would like to work with you in future projects. Good Luck!

over 6 years ago

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Akash Sharma

Thanks for sharing this Patricio, I think social media has really given the right kind of power to masses and the talent out there can be easily spotted.Many have become huge success stories over the past few years and the credit goes to the interactive platforms which are there so that we can see things which come out naturally without using a lot of money.

over 6 years ago

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Patrick Clarkson, offical at new york post

Yeh. But $300 would go alot further in Uruguay remember.

And he didn't really make it himself, there seemed to be about 10 people involved.

Still, fantastic effort and achievement.

http://www.topnflnews.com/

over 6 years ago

James Gurd

James Gurd, Owner at Digital JugglerSmall Business Multi-user

Interesting post Patricio - loved the vid, always good to see talented people getting attention.

Social networks have been helping people get discovered for years - music being the best example where MySpace and YouTube have both helped create stars.

The Internet has a strong element of democracy where the global community can quickly voice their opinions and help raise the profile of what they like. The big change is that those with money and influence are waking up to this potential and actively sourcing information and contacts from social networks.

Whilst helping the cream rise to the top, it can also quickly alienate people/companies who are performing badly. So may examples, so little time but United Airline PR disaster off the back of a customer's YouTube videos is a prime example. That's why I love the web - people have the tools to voice their opinions and other can choose whether or not to share and spread them.

I hope the deal comes off Fede Alvarez gets to play with a big budget.

thanks

james

over 6 years ago

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Adil I

Apparently I just checked Justin's twitter page and as of now he has more then 1 million followers and everytime I refresh the page , new followers are added!!! Talk about one of the most succesful twitters... Just 89 tweets and already a phenominal success.

over 6 years ago

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Kate Hanley

I have said it a million times that if you want to be sucssesful in Online business and want to earn then Twitter is one of the best source of doing so..

over 6 years ago

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m65

very nice work patricio keep it up. it really made a difference 

over 6 years ago

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Chaussures Sports

st checked Justin's twitter page and as of now he has more then 1 million followers and everytime I refresh the page , new follo

over 6 years ago

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Howtogetyourexback

Thanks everyone for sharing your thoughts, it's great to read your stories and see some similar experiences from the past decade!

over 6 years ago

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spongebobsquarepants

It's an amazing number, now I know more about the price to make a video. but what should we do if don't have enough money like that?

over 6 years ago

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tinggi badan

Who is Alvarez? Alvarez is a professional (one blog describes him as "an FX guy and commercial director"), but you (and the rest of the world) hadn't heard of him before. How did he land such a deal? One word: YouTube.

over 6 years ago

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Video Production Phoenix

WOw that's pretty massive for a short famousity. I still choose the animosity behind it.

about 6 years ago

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