Neistat at the SXSW Music Festival in March 2017
Casey Owen Neistat
March 25, 1981
Gales Ferry, Connecticut, U.S.
|Residence||New York City, U.S.|
|Partner(s)||Robin Harris (1998–2001)|
(March 16, 2019)
|Total views||2.52 billion|
(March 16, 2019)
|Subscriber and view counts updated as of March 16, 2019.|
Casey Owen Neistat (//; born March 25, 1981) is an American YouTube personality, filmmaker, vlogger and co-founder of the multimedia company Beme, which was later acquired by CNN. In 2018, he founded 368, a creative space for creators to collaborate and influence each other.
- 1 Early life and education
- 2 Early filmmaking career
- 3 Advertising
- 4 Daily vlogs
- 5 Beme
- 6 368
- 7 Public speaking
- 8 Personal life
- 9 Filmography
- 10 Awards and nominations
- 11 References
- 12 External links
Early life and education
Neistat was born into a Jewish family in Gales Ferry, Connecticut on March 25, 1981. He dropped out of high school during his sophomore year at the age of 17 and did not return to school, nor graduate. He eventually left his family and had a son named Owen, at age 17, with his then-girlfriend Robin Harris. Between the age of 17 and 20, he lived in a trailer park with Harris and his infant son. It was during this time that Neistat decided to move to New York City.
Early filmmaking career
Work with Tom Sachs
iPod's Dirty Secret
Neistat first gained international exposure in 2003 for a three-minute film titled iPod's Dirty Secret, criticizing Apple for not having a battery replacement program for their iPod line of portable media players. The film received national media attention and brought broad attention to the company's policy towards iPod battery replacements. The film was posted to the Internet on September 20, 2003, and quickly attracted media attention. The film was praised as "wonderfully renegade" by the Washington Post.
Apple announced a battery replacement policy on November 14, 2003, and also announced an extended iPod warranty program on November 21. Fox News set the date of the policy change at "two weeks" after the posting of the clip and Neil Cavuto called it a "David and Goliath story" on Fox News' Your World. Apple spokeswoman Natalie Sequeira denied any connection between the film and the new policy, stating the policy revision had been in the works for months before the film was released.
In 2004, Neistat and his brother produced a film series titled Science Experiments. The 15-minute series featured a number of short films documenting various experiments. The series was included in the 26th São Paulo Biennial in São Paulo, Brazil. The work was popular, and was eventually featured in Creative Time's 59th Minute program showing a one-minute excerpt from Neistat's film every 59 minutes on the Panasonic Times Square Astrovision.
The Neistat Brothers
In July 2008, HBO purchased an eight-episode television series, The Neistat Brothers, for just under $2 million. The series was produced by Casey and Van Neistat, Mason Daugherty and Tom Scott. Independent film producer Christine Vachon served as consulting producer. Written and directed by Casey and Van, the show is autobiographical and told in the first person. Each of the eight episodes is made up of short stories about the brothers' lives. The show premiered June 4, 2010 at midnight on HBO.
The Hollywood Reporter said "the Neistat Brothers are to film what Dr Seuss is to literature". Hank Stuever of the Washington post noted 'the Neistats exhibit an enthusiasm for life that you can't help but love'. The show was not without detractors. The blog The Zeitgeisty Report called the show 'A cutesy, hipster-y, pretentious mess' and went on to suggest it was "the most irritating show in HBO's history."
On February 17, 2010, Neistat uploaded a video about when, and when not, to use the emergency brake cord on train cars in the New York City Subway. Neistat criticised the way that the MTA did not make it clear when the emergency brake cord should be pulled. According to the video, one should only use the emergency brake system when the motion of the train poses an imminent threat to life or limb.
On February 23, 2010, Neistat released a six-minute film on Vimeo about the Internet site Chatroulette. It explains what the Chatroulette site is, how it works, and why people use it. Various experiments are conducted in the video with the findings presented in stop frame animations. One experiment found that people on Chatroulette are much more likely to talk to a woman. While 95% "nexted" Neistat, his female friend Genevieve was clicked away by only 5%.
On June 7, 2011, Neistat criticized New York City Police Department's ticketing of cyclists in New York City for riding outside of the marked bike lanes. In a video titled "Bike Lanes", Neistat encounters an officer and receives a $50 ticket for not riding within the lanes. Neistat then proceeds to comically ride his bike in the lane crashing into various obstructions, supporting the argument that lanes aren't the safest at all times and are even sometimes unusable. In response, New York Magazine called Neistat a "Bike-Lane Vigilante" and the film was covered by most mainstream media outlets. Additionally, Time named "Bike Lanes" number 8 on their Top 10 Creative Videos of 2011 list.
In addition to his career in television and film, Neistat also directs and stars in television commercials, having worked with clients such as Samsung, Nike, Google, Finn Jewelry, J.Crew, and Mercedes-Benz.
Make It Count
Make It Count is a video written, directed, and starring Neistat, for Nike. The video begins with scrolling text that reads "Nike asked me to make a movie about what it means to #makeitcount. Instead of making their movie I spent the entire budget traveling around the world with my friend Max. We'd keep going until the money ran out. It took 10 days."
The video then begins in earnest with Neistat and his collaborator Max Joseph traveling to the airport. Fast editing of their travels with interludes of inspirational quotes make up the film ultimately ending with Neistat returning to New York City where the story began. On April 8, 2012, Nike launched the video on their official YouTube page titled "Make It Count". The next day Neistat launched the video on his official YouTube. Neistat's posting went viral, as within the first three days the film garnered over one and a half million views.
Mashable's Zoe Fox commented that it was "The Best Branding Story Ever Told". A number of mainstream outlets referred to Neistat's production of the film as 'going rogue' including CNNGo, Fast Company and Conde Nast Traveler.
Neistat started to post daily vlogs on YouTube on March 26, 2015. Neistat has stated that he sees his vlogs more as a forum as opposed to a daily journal. On January 19, 2016 Neistat posted his 300th vlog., although between November 2016 and March 2017 Neistat stopped making vlogs to focus more on short-films
As of July 13, 2018, Neistat has released 936 vlogs including other films on his YouTube channel since its creation on February 15, 2010. On August 23, 2015, Neistat reached 1 million subscribers which increased to 4 million by August 2016, 5 million by October 2016, 6 million by December 2016, 7 million by April 2017, then 8 million by October 2017, 9 million by February 2018, 10 million by July 2018, and 11 million by March 2019.
In a July 8, 2015 vlog, Neistat announced that he had been working with Matt Hackett on building a video sharing app called Beme. Designed as an alternative to highly edited content found in social media, the app enabled users to produce unedited four-second videos, which were immediately uploaded and shared with the user's subscribers, without the ability to review the video. Users could respond to shared content by sending "reactions", photographs of themselves, back to the video uploader.
Beme released the first version of the app on July 17, 2015. Shortly after the launch, BuzzFeed described Beme's minimalist design as "deceptively simple and decidedly weird." The New York Times explained that Beme's user experience was "as if the phone becomes a stand-in for one's body, the camera facing outward to capture what the user is experiencing." Within eight days of the app's release, Beme users had shared 1.1 million videos and logged 2.4 million reactions.
On November 28, 2016, CNN announced that it would acquire Beme, reportedly for US $25 million and on November 29, 2016, Hackett announced via an email to its users that the app would be shutting down on January 31, 2017.
On January 25, 2018 at 8:50am, Neistat published a YouTube video entitled "Beme Update", in which Neistat announced that he and Hackett had severed their ties with CNN. Neistat stated that he was not fired nor did he quit, simply that he and CNN had reached a mutual agreement that they would no longer continue working together. Neistat admitted his frustration with working in a team environment and as a manager and stated he began to remove himself from a supervisory role beginning in the summer of 2017. Neistat went on to state that he blamed himself for the failure and was sad that there would be members of the Beme media team that would no longer be employed by CNN. Neistat removed the video from his YouTube channel at 9:30am. Neistat then uploaded a much shorter and revised video to his YouTube channel, "Moving on from Beme", in which he downplayed the previous references to his frustrations and shortcomings in the previously uploaded and removed video.
Beme was removed from the iOS App Store and Google Play Store on January 31, 2017
On April 5, 2018, Neistat announced a new project: 368 (named after its address, 368 Broadway, New York), a creative space for creators to collaborate. On April 12, CEO of Patreon Jack Conte, announced a potential collaboration with Neistat on the project.
Neistat has lectured on topics related to filmmaking and his life experiences including giving public lectures,, speaking at The Nantucket Project, and giving a TEDx talk at TEDxParkerSchool.
In 2005, Neistat eloped with Candice Pool in Houston, Texas. This marriage lasted about a month, and ended with an annulment. He later reconciled with Pool, and got engaged to her on February 18, 2013. On December 29, 2013, Neistat and Pool were married in Cape Town, South Africa. Together, they have two daughters named Francine and Georgie.
His grandmother Louise Neistat (born Louise Celice Grossman), was a tap dancer and one of the Radio City Music Hall's Rockettes during World War II. In 2004, he directed a video in which his grandmother made the "world's greatest french toast", and delivered it to his son, Owen. On October 31, 2011, Neistat posted a four-minute short film on YouTube about his grandmother. The video opens with him asking his grandmother how many more years she thinks she will put on her annual tap dance show, then inter-cuts various press clippings from her accomplished life with footage from her most recent tap dance show; the focus of her accomplishments being the money her tap dancing has raised for cancer research-related charities. The video was tweeted by YouTube's official Twitter handle and appeared on numerous news and viral video websites including the Huffington Post. 22 days after the video was posted, Louise died of natural causes at the age of 92; Neistat wrote her obituary and delivered the eulogy.
On October 12, 2018, Neistat uploaded a video titled "we had a baby", where he announced that his wife had given birth to a baby girl.
|2008||The Pleasure of Being Robbed||No||Executive||No||No|||
|2019||Untitled Schulman/Joost project||No||No||No||Yes||Post-production|
|2010||The Neistat Brothers||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Himself|||
|2011||Alter Egos||No||No||Yes||No||1 episode|
|2018||The Untitled Action Bronson Show||No||No||No||Yes||Himself||1 episode|
Awards and nominations
|2010||Independent Spirit Awards||John Cassavetes Award||Won||with Tom Scott|
|2016||Shorty Awards||YouTuber of the Year||Won|||
|GQ Men of the Year||New Media Star||Won|||
|Streamy Awards||Entertainer of the Year||Won|
|Best First-Person Series||Won|
|2017||Streamy Awards||Creator of the Year||Nominated|
|2018||Streamy Awards||Creator of the Year||Nominated|
|Podcast||Nominated||Couples therapy with Candice and Casey|
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