FAKE IT TIL YOU MAKE IT: THE RISE OF THE TIKTOK META-CELEBRITY

FAKE IT TIL YOU MAKE IT: THE RISE OF THE TIKTOK META-CELEBRITY

by Stella Hughes
3 min

There was speculation that TikTok would be buying a table at the Met Gala this year. Whilst the concept would have been laughable a couple of years ago, in 2022, it actually isn’t that far-fetched. Although traditionally tables are bought (at great expense) by fashion houses, who invite guests that will wear their designs, recent years have seen online and tech companies start buying tables, as well as big TikTok-ers being invited to, notoriously, fashion’s most exclusive event.

In some ways, it was to be expected: this season of awards has seen famous faces from the app grace the various red carpets as well as line them, interviewing attendees and advertising their presence at the events. Take The Oscars – another ‘exclusive’ event in the arts, which this year partnered with TikTok to attract younger audiences and combat its decline in views. Although Will Smith did a lot of the heavy lifting in terms of making sure the ratings, ahem, hit this year, another factor was undoubtedly the influx of TikTok-ers who brought a fresh perspective to proceedings – and perhaps none so powerfully as Emily Uribe.

Emily Uribe rose to prominence on the app for her videos in which she acts out being interviewed by various talk show hosts, replicating celebrities on live, or being questioned on the red carpet. With her sketches gaining millions of views, Uribe’s ability to capture the nuances and exact tone of countless celebrities when being interviewed on prime time TV has earnt her a loyal following and notoriety of her own on the app. 

@emilyuuribe

#britishaccent #england #actingcoach #dialectcoach #mockinterview pretending I was acting when I was 16, like NAUR babe you were playing field hockey!

♬ original sound – Emily

Although ad-libbing and constructing the anecdotes herself, Emily’s sketches point out and poke fun at this genre of entertainment, all from the comfort of her own home. So when she was invited by TikTok to interview attendees of The Oscars, TikTok as a whole seemed to enter a new era: Emily had superseded her own parodies, interviewee became interviewer, and she embodied the phrase fake it til you make it.

@emilyuuribe

the chance to speak to two of my icons! And we will work together. @jayaharper ur a LEGEND

♬ original sound – Emily

Seeing Emily’s success has no doubt inspired a whole legion of other creators on the app, too. Georgina Johnson, 21 year old actor, is doing the same on the app. Gaining popularity over lockdown for her scarily-accurate faux interviews on Zoom, she too is spearheading the ‘meta-celebrity’ movement, or faking it ‘til she makes it. Robyn, aka @girlbosstown, is also doing something similar – offering “PR moves” for celebrities and companies, as well as reacting to red carpet looks and crucial moments in pop culture “from her couch”, which has landed her presenting jobs and nearly 500k followers on TikTok.

Perhaps it’s not news that in 2022, fame can come from all angles – but this new generation of celebrities producing sketches that land them high-profile jobs offline present a new frontier for entertainment at large.

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See also: …AND BREATHE. THESE THREE BRANDS WON THE MET GALA

See also: COLOUR, PRINT & DECONSTRUCTION: MEET IMI STUDIOS

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