On Tuesday, the world of Teens Online was wracked with feverish anticipation over a movie most adults were at best dimly aware of: The Outfield.
The Outfield, as the cultured among you no doubt already know, is the movie debut of Nash Grier and Cameron Dallas. Grier and Dallas are most famous for being hugely popular on the video-loop social network Vine, where they trade in affable good looks and slightly mean jokes; Christopher Glazek’s description of Grier from earlier this year is a good introduction:
Nash makes funny videos, or at least the teenagers watching them find them funny. Many of his most esteemed clips feature his 4-year-old sister, Skylynn, in varying states of minstrelsy: repeating rap lyrics or flipping an imaginary weave. Other Vines include jokes about gender roles (“How guys fart vs. how girls fart”), Jesus Christ, and celebrities. He has Disney Channel good looks and eyes the color of blue Gatorade, a topic of persistent fascination to his fangirls, who flood his comment section with thousands of notes of encouragement containing hundreds of thousands of heart emojis.
Both Grier and Dallas are marquee names on a sort of Vine-star traveling circus called MagCon, a popular event at which the various (teenage male) stars of Vine attempt to work their talent for charming 15-second mugging into an hour-long stage show, to varying degrees of success. The Outfield marks Grier and Dallas’s most high-profile collaboration yet. I’d describe it as their bid for mainstream movie success, but really it’s just a bid for a more direct revenue stream: It stars no other recognizable Hollywood actors and is being released directly to iTunes, where Dallas and Grier are now trying to get it to the No. 1 spot with the self-explanatory hashtag campaign #TheOutfieldToNumberOne.
But, ahh, why buy the cow (the Vine stars’ movie) when you can get the milk (Vine stars livetweeting themselves watching their movie) for free? “Ahah I just started it,” Dallas tweeted at 4:03 p.m. (as of publication, 5,445 retweets and 12,900 likes), opening up a brief “Twitter watch along” window. Parsimonious Vine-star fans could now watch the movie through the tweets of their idols, without spending a penny. It was … not particularly elucidating.
“Ahhhh this is my favorite scene,” Dallas tweeted at 4:54 p.m. ET, 36 minutes before the movie finished. He hasn’t tweeted since. Grier spent most of the “watch along” period encouraging fans in different countries to push the film to No. 1.
The Outfield is available on iTunes, where it has a five-star rating after nearly 16,000 reviews. “IM SO EXCITED FOR THIS TO COME OUT , I CRIED JUST WATCHING THE TRAILER . SO PROUD OF CAM AND NASH ON HOW FAR THEY HAVE COME . KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK BOYS, LOVE U MORE THAN ANYONE,” reads one review.