Thought Jennifer Lawrence was America’s favorite quirky character? Think again. According to a new study by Variety, kids like Ryan Higa and KSI have more clout with the kids.
After polling millenials aged 13 to 18, Variety found that the YouTube comedy group Smosh — a.k.a. Ian Andrew Hecox and Anthony Padilla, both 26 — are #1 on a popularity list that includes Katy Perry and Danielle Radcliffe. The Fine Bros. came in second, and in fact, the next Hollywood-vetted celeb comes in at #5 with Paul Walker.
“Teens enjoy an intimate and authentic experience with YouTube celebrities, who aren’t subject to image strategies carefully orchestrated by PR pros,” Variety wrote. “Teens also say they appreciate YouTube stars’ more candid sense of humor, lack of filter and risk-taking spirit, behaviors often curbed by Hollywood handlers.”
This lack of filter perhaps works best for celebrities like the hilarious, over-sharing J-Law, who falls at #7 on the list. But while Smosh has well over 18 million subscribers on YouTube, Lawrence has 0 Twitter followers and not much of an online presence. It all goes to prove that you don’t need to go through casting or hire a manger to gain a following. All you need is a personality.