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MysteryGuitarMan takes on the future of technology in new Fox series
The trend of YouTubers making their way to TV continues.
Another YouTuber is stepping out of the digital space and onto the small screen. Joe Penna, otherwise known as MysteryGuitarMan, will make the leap as part of Fox’s new show, Xploration Earth 2050, this Fall.
Penna’s show, which will focus on the future of technology, is part of a new two-hour Saturday morning block of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) programming that begins in September, and features content from the likes of Philippe Cousteau, Jr., grandson of legendary Jacques Cousteau. Penna, a Brazilian filmmaker, rose to fame as MysteryGuitarMan on YouTube, commanding an audience of more than 2.8 million. He has also produced national television spots for Coca Cola and McDonalds.
“Joe is curious, smart and tremendously likable,” said Xploration Earth 2050 executive producer Steve Rotfeld in a statement. “One of the things that attracted us to him was his popular YouTube channel. He’ll bring in the younger viewers.”
Rotfeld’s sentiment about luring young folks with YouTube talent puts Penna’s hire in line with other networks already taking gambles on other digital-first talent. For example, the Epic Meal Time crew recently launched their food show on the FYI network, and Shane Dawson will star in an upcoming Starz series about filmmaking. However, it remains to be seen how effectively these network plays will drive eyeballs from computers to TV sets.
Screengrab via Exploration Station/YouTube
A former YouTube reporter for the Daily Dot, Rae Votta has more than a decade of experience in the digital and entertainment industries. Her work has appeared on AOL, Huffington Post, Out Magazine, Logo, VH1, Current TV, Billboard, and NYMag. She joined Netflix in 2016.