The Daily Universe

Students become YouTube sensations

Like most kids, three 13-year-old kids got together after school every day dreaming of making movies. They made short parodies of what influence them most — “James  Bond,” “Harry Potter,” “Mission: Impossible” and “Spider-Man.”

Landon Sperry, Casen Sperry and Mike Brown have come a long way from their childhood in Mesa, Ariz. They have a successful YouTube channel with close to 13,000 subscribers and almost 3 million channel views.  The channel, “Warialasky,” is inspired by successful YouTubers Freddie Wong and Julian Smith.

[media-credit name=”Photo by Sarah Strobel” align=”alignleft” width=”300″][/media-credit]
Landon Sperry, Casey Sperry and Mike Brown have been getting millions of views on their YouTube channel.
“Warialasky” draws ideas through things the trio has noticed in video games or action movies. Since November 2011, the channel has been putting up videos once a week, including ideas about Skyrim, Goldeneye 64 and lazy Jedis.

[pullquote]”Since we’re YouTube partners we have the opportunity to make money off of our videos,” Brown said.[/pullquote]

The group first got inspired to start their YouTube channel after Casen Sperry took a social media production class that focused on videos for YouTube. The class, taught by Jacob Schwarz and Devin Graham, helped guide Sperry on how to get more subscribers, utilize social media tools and find a target demographic.

“The whole idea of the class is to open up the eyes of filmmakers and artists alike to understand the potential that YouTube has to offer them, to have a voice and an opportunity to find and retain and communicate with their audiences,” Schwarz said.

Because of Warialasky’s success the channel has recently become partners with YouTube, working through the channel Machinima, one of the most subscribed channels on YouTube. As partners the trio now make money from their videos and are given a stronger voice in the YouTube community.

Mike Brown also studies filmmaking, doing his coursework at UVU. He hopes to work in the future with feature films or video game development. Brown sees the YouTube partnership as an advantage to create better quality of videos, but won’t let it compromise the integrity of the channel.

“Since we’re YouTube partners we have the opportunity to make money off of our videos,” Brown said. “The more money that we make from the more views we get, the more money we are going to spend and the better the videos.”

Unlike the other men, Landon Sperry is not studying filmmaking, and is in school part-time at BYU seeking an anthropology degree. However, Landon has been interested in filmmaking from his youth and before the YouTube videos took off, the three were involved in filming locally for weddings. Each video done for YouTube takes hours of writing, filming and editing that is shared between the three members.

“Man hours, we’re talking around 80 depending on the video,” Landon Sperry said. “Some are shorter and are really easy and straightforward but they’re always harder than we thought it would be. We usually pull an all-nighter before we post it.”

Warialasky is doing more than just attracting subscribers; the group has been approached by a number of contacts who want to use their skills. They have been asked to do a 3D movie in Poland and have an offer by a Hollywood agent to represent them. However, for right now the men are content doing YouTube movies.

Casen Sperry, who is studying filmmaking at BYU, believes the Internet is the wave of the future and wants to stay on YouTube as long as possible.

“Online distribution is so perfect, it’s so easy,” Casen Sperry said. “I have the opportunity to do what I want, to send the messages or make the films that I want instead of doing my entire career doing what others want”

To see movies filmed by the trio visit youtube.com/user/Warialasky.