Interviewed by Sukhmani Sadana: April 2021
You dropped out from school to pursue your YouTube career. This is a story we would love to know. How did you choose this career?
I was around 10 years old when I discovered YouTube and I was instantly drawn towards the potentiality of it. I thought about pursuing it as a full-fledged career when I was 13. It was a very intuitive calling for me. It was all very organic and let’s just say I was a curious kid. I remember in the start, I used to record myself doing all these crazy football tactics so that I could replay it million times and learn from my slipups to ace the sport. Little did I know at that time I’d be doing content creation for a living? It honestly scares me sometimes when I look back and see how I dropped out to pursue the digital medium that wasn’t as evolved as it is today. I did miss the regular college life and hanging out with friends on campus but this is all compensated by the love and support showered by my fans over the years. My parents were a massive pillar of support when I first started out but there was discipline inculcated. They made me promise them that I would complete my education via distance learning. The alias for me is just a cool sounding name that I spotted as a comment from a fan one on of my posts and I just liked it so I retained it.
How does it feel to be the youngest and most popular digital creator in Asia?
I am so grateful to the audience because without them I don’t think it would have been possible. I consider myself lucky and blessed to be in this position where people love me unconditionally. I believe more than the numbers, it’s about the impact you have on so many lives. It’s indeed a moment of pride for all of us that an Indian is leading in Asia now. While what I do appears to be the most fun job on the planet there are a lot of shortcomings that tag along with the responsibility of being Asia’s number 1 YouTube creator and adds up to the whole pressure. You see it’s not enough to simply generate great content. The audience expects consistency and frequency if you want to stand out in a crowd. Having said that my aim was never to ace some world record, it was always about enjoying what I did and if success came my way then it was due to the love of my fans, blessings of my family and God’s grace.
How do you choose the subject or topic for your videos?
It all depends on the format of the video. If it is a consecutive action-reaction video it takes me two weeks. If it’s a rant or a current topic it can take more than a month because I have to create a base which is further modified and shot, thereafter I take feedback from my management team to gauge how much more fine tuning is required. When I am creating content, I don’t decide in advance on how many expletives would feature in a video, it’s all contextual to the narrative. I do not have any set formula for choosing someone for my roast and I do not target any particular individual, group, community, etc. I feel that’s unfair, biased and against my upbringing. I try to find content which is genuinely amusing and cringe worthy.
With some many people trying to be an influencer or content creator, how does one stay afloat and stand out in the crowd?
Experimentation is a key driver for content survival. With the advent of technology, the exposure to the online world has doubled and today content creators are as important as cricketers and Bollywood stars in the ecosphere. Your platform needs to be a place where you can be limitless and your most authentic self without the fear of being judged. Experimental content is the king of new age media today, and the algorithm loves you the most when content speaks to the audience and breaks stereotypes.
Which is that one video you enjoyed making the most?
I can’t pick a particular video because every video is special but the videos I really enjoyed making were “Life of a cringe pop artist” which nudged me to retract from my comfort zone and surprise my audience and “The art of bad words” which was the first time I actually did some serious reading and did an in-depth study on linguistics and their impact on society.
What is the key to Good content according to you?
My numero uno advice would be to not fall prey to the rat race of likes and followers and be unique in the content you create. Decide on a differentiating vantage point in terms of your content selection, something that you are passionate and confident about and will give you an edge over your peers. Good content is the only way to build an organic and authentic subscriber base. Please don’t allow the concept of followers or likes influence your commitment to the art. Create content because you’re passionate about it and see merit in what you have to offer to the world.
You’re making your Bollywood debut. Tell us more about that?
MayDay isn’t my full-fledged debut.It’s more like an extension of what Ido. What made it really interestingfor me to align forces on MayDaywas when I heard I am supposedto be essaying my own character(CarryMinati). I eat, breathe, sleepand live my character every singleday. I learnt a thing or two aboutacting from Ajay Devgn Sir and Ican’t wait to get back on the secondschedule. I never imagined I couldbe a one take artist and speciallywhen facing such legends in realitybut the entire team has been to represent India on the world stage when it comes to content creation, music & gaming and further stretch my wings and keep flying. Very encouraging and supportive. It’s amazing to be teaming up with AjayDevgn Sir again for Big Bull since now Yalgaar is the official title track of the film. Though if you ask me, my authentic acting innings will happen when I secure an opportunity to dedicate myself wholeheartedly to the art unflinchingly, everything else I do right now I consider as a special appearance. Currently I dedicate 10 hours in a day for content creation which will never take a backseat and I’d like to consider that as my passion and calling, acting and music for me is a medium where I can showcase my art to a more varied audience.
What’s your final goal or have you already achieved it?
To represent India on the world stage when it comes to contentcreation, music & gaming andfurther stretch my wings andkeep flying.