The main draws behind YouTube Red — the site’s recently launched subscription service — were always ad-free viewing and the promise of original content. Until now, though, there was no original content, so if you subscribed to Red, you basically paid Google $9.99 to remove ads (and maybe offline viewing).
Here are YouTube’s descriptions of those new movies and shows:
- A Trip to Unicorn Island: From the team at Astronauts Wanted, this feature-length movie gives fans an extraordinary look inside the life and journey of Lilly Singh as she embarks on a challenging 26-city global tour where she has to remember to practice what she preaches: happiness is the only thing worth fighting for.
- Dance Camp: This feature film from AwesomenessTV weaves an amazing story of unlikely friendships, unleashing passions and discovering yourself all through the power of dance.
- Lazer Team: In this feature-length action-comedy from Rooster Teeth and Fullscreen Films, four small-town losers stumble upon an alien ship carrying a mysterious cargo, leading to a battle to save Earth from an all-powerful enemy.
- Scare PewDiePie: In this reality-adventure series from the creator and executive producers of “The Walking Dead” at Skybound Entertainment and Maker Studios, experience thrills, chills and laughter as PewDiePie encounters terrifying situations inspired by his favorite video games.
None of these look like they’ll be YouTube’s House of Cards. Instead, the focus is clearly on a demographic that would know Felix Arvid Ulf Kjellberg (aka PewDiePie) and Lilly Singh. If you’re not a subscriber already, this first set of original programming on YouTube Red probably won’t convince you to become one.
“The diverse, dynamic creators behind these films have already built massive audiences on YouTube, rivaling many cable shows,” the YouTube team writes in today’s announcement. “With YouTube Red Originals, we want to help them tell bigger and bolder stories that delight you, their fans. YouTube Red is your opportunity to support the passion projects your favorite creators have only dreamed about until now.”
Google has yet to disclose how many people have signed up for YouTube Red. PewDiePie alone has over 41 million YouTube subscribers, though, and chances are that some of these will subscribe to YouTube Red just to see more of him (or they will all hate him for “selling out” — it’s kind of hard to say with this demographic).
YouTube says it will bring more content to Red later this year.