Recently, Richard was in Las Vegas airport over night alone after being bumped off of two flights (yes you read that right, alone). He decided to make a funny video for his family and friends with no intention of it taking off the way it already has in the past 4 months.
If you haven't already watched it, spend your next five minutes laughing:
Believe it or not, this video was filmed by only Richard himself using just his iPhone camera.
This week I was given the opportunity to sit in on a session with Richard and some fellow students to discuss what his intentions with the film were and how he made his idea become a reality. But, most importantly, he outlined a few important aspects of his video making that can be applied to everyday life decisions.
First, Richard explained that he was skeptical about doing interviews for stations such as Good Morning America, Canadian networks and even Australia companies. Once he made it over the hurdle of appearing on national television, he was then asked if he would write a book about the processes he used to create this film by simply using his own personal knowledge and an iPhone. The next step was speaking to the public and telling them what they wanted to hear about his experience and advice. All three of these were new ideas to him, something he was unfamiliar about. Richard stated that he was going to be scared whether he followed through the with interviews, a book and presentations or if he sat out and watched the opportunity fly by. The most inspiring words I took away from his talk with the group was that if you are scared, just do it! You will be scared either way so why not just get up and do what is being presented to you. He established that he already took the big leap to publish a "silly little video" so why not see where else it could take him.
This leads to his next piece of advice: take hold of opportunities that come your way. Richard's first thought when he was bumped off of his flight was that he would stay in the airport over night, and how would he entertain himself. He saw the opportunity to set the scene in a "familiar place with unfamiliar circumstances" that would appeal to his family and friends to get a few giggles into their days. He prides himself on bringing laughter into the lives of the people around him because he claims that there is nothing better you can do for a person. When making the short video he never expected for over 20 million people to see him pouring water over his face in the middle of an abandoned airport, but now he has shared his humor with all of those people, and I think that's one of the most important things he took away from his internet fame.
Next, Richard explained that he wasn't in this for the money. In fact, he's getting paid very little from the profits of his book at all. He wanted people to laugh, and I think he's done just that. Everyone continuously asked him, "Richard, what's next?" and he explained that it wasn't his original intention to take this project any further. "I'm speaking to you as the guy who sat in his living room editing a five and a half minute video for his family, not the guy whose video has been viewed 20 million times." From just the hour long interaction I had with him, he seemed like a very grounded and humble man. He continued to offer his advice and knowledge to anyone who asked as well as explain that he was never aware of the leap this video would take.
So to finally answer the question of "What's next?" here is Richard's most recent video (which has had 3,000 views since we checked it 24 hours ago).