Get your cat on with VICE

Lil Bub. Courtesy VICE.

The number one thing searched on the Internet is pornography. The second most popular search target is cats. It’s not surprising. People love sex and cats and that’s just a universal truth. And one media company has the edge on all the others because it has taken our adoration of the cat seriously.

VICE Productions is a thriving Internet and media production company with a diverse slate of short and full length films covering politics, music, zombies, youth culture, science and even fashion. Indeed, VICE got its start as a news and entertainment company, but has expanded to produce video content and now films, such as I Love Sarah Jane — directed by Spencer Susser and starring Mia Wasikowska, and Dan Sully’s The Ellington Kid.

Now VICE is jumping on the cat bandwagon with a trilogy of shorts featuring the Internet’s most famous cats and their humans, including Keyboard Cat Guy. And that’s just scratching the surface.

In a short while, Lil Bub fans will be treated to a full-length feature film called Lil Bub & Friendz. It explores her rise to fame, her passionate fan base and her day to day life with her Dude, Smoosh and the fishes. Here’s the trailer in which she curls up in her owner’s arms, so delightfully decorated with a Bub tattoo.

Producer Juliette Eisner co-produced the trilogy of shorts and the Lil Bub film. She explains the facts of cat life at VICE and we learn that it is definitely very personal.

Why did VICE green light not one, or two, but FOUR cat films?

Juliette Eisner: Over the summer the Walker Arts Center held the first-ever Internet Cat Video Film Festival in Minneapolis. We headed out with a small team of three to cover the festival, but it quickly turned into something much bigger. Lil Bub & Friendz is now a full-length feature that follows Lil Bub’s rise to fame, the internet cat phenomenon, the monetization of YouTube videos and Internet celebrities, and more. The 3-part My Life Online mini cat series are all interviews filmed during the making of Lil Bub & Friendz.

Why do you suppose cats have created such an Internet sensation?

JE: People have always had soft spots for animals and cute things. With the rise of the Internet, cats can now thrive in a space that is accessible to all. What do they say now? “The Internet is made of cats.”

You’ve met many of the famous cat dudes and they appear in your film. What are your impressions?

JE: The famous cat dudes are my buddies! I talk to Lil Bub’s owner at least three times a day. They are normal people who are great animal owners and care deeply about their pets, but who happen to have tapped into a booming phenomenon. They’re like the socially acceptable version of crazy parents of child stars… because their “children” are adorable animals.

You met Lil Bub. What was she like?

JE: Bub is the cutest cat in the world. She is a one of a kind, an alien kitten. And I love her.

I take it you’re a die-hard cat woman?

JE: I’ve always had cats in my life. My first two were named Brother and Sister. I’m an only child.

So dear friends, cat fancy is indeed a universal truth and VICE is sticking to it. Watch this space for Lil Bub & Friendz news.

Top image: Lil Bub. Courtesy VICE.com.

Anne Brodie

About Anne Brodie

Anne Brodie is a freelance film reporter and critic.