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Yasss Teen: Exploring YouTube with Lohanthony

The upcoming generation of teens is full of kids who are stars to each other, but inhabit practically a different social universe from adults. They're building their own social media followings on Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter, you name it -- but to what end? For the olds among us: who are these teens, and how can we be as cool as them? Get to know the most fascinating teens on the internet in our feature, Yasss Teen.

Lohanthony_Headshot.jpgIt feels like I've known about Lohanthony forever, since his videos and images were so widely circulated (especially on Tumblr, which was my first internet home). Since bursting onto the viral internet with his nine-second magnum opus, "CALLING ALL THE BASIC BITCHES," Lohanthony has had an excitable, ubiquitous presence. Last year, Rich Juzwiak called him the "Littlest Big Diva" in New York.

Since then, Lohanthony has branched out from YouTube videos. He's appeared with the stars of Oxygen's Prancing Elites, has a movie on the way, and just released his first compilation album, titled Landscapes. We spoke to Lohanthony about his career and what it's like to have Kate Moss and Marc Jacobs make a tribute video to you.

Lohanthony_Album_Artwork 2.jpgCan you tell me a little bit about the process that went into choosing the songs on this album?

For this compilation, I basically just took thirty songs that I'm currently obsessed with to the manager of the compilation, and just sat around waiting for the review. Is this song gonna make it, will it be cut. But thankfully, all my favorite tracks got on the compilation, so that's great. I have such a huge obsession with music because I have access to so much, thanks to Spotify and Tumblr and websites that stream music. I find so many new songs and artists every single day thanks to those music streaming websites. I had so many current favorite songs that I was looking to share already, so I just gathered a bunch of them and put them in a compilation.

I was listening to it earlier, a lot of it is very pleasant fun electro-pop, and it kind of follows that motif. Is that just how your favorite music was when you were making that compilation, or was it a specific sound you were going for?

I guess all the songs kind of personally spoke to me. I love house/electronic music, and you can definitely tell listening to this compilation.

This is one of a few things that you've been doing lately in your career - performing with the Prancing Elites, and you announced that you had a movie role earlier this year in a video. Is this you moving more into working in the entertainment industry?

Oh yes, I am trying to make my way in the traditional entertainment industry as much as I can. Just letting everyone know that Anthony's taking over and Anthony's here. The movie is called Miss Stevens. Some information on that website is false, but what is true is that I star in it, and that Lily Rabe and Lili Reinhart and Timothée Chalamet star in it as well.

Can you tell me a little bit about how that came to be?

The writer of the movie reached out to me and was like, "I just know that you are perfect for this role. I have been looking for someone to play this role for so long. I came across you and your videos recently and thought, 'This is it. He is the one,'" and I have to agree with her. The role fits me so well, and I was just so grateful to have a writer be so supportive and so truly sure that the role was meant for me.

There's a lot of instances of really, really famous people like Marc Jacobs, are reaching out to you publicly over social media, and in his case doing your basic bitch leg video. How was seeing Marc Jacobs and Kate Moss liking your work so much and reaching out to you and doing their own version of it?

It's just all so surreal to me. Never did I ever think that uploading a video would get me in the eyes of all these influential and amazing people. I look up to so many people who have seen my videos and actually like them. I don't know how, but it's just absolutely crazy, and it only pushes me harder. I gotta give my love to anyone who supports me, no matter how big their status is in the world.

This ones for you @lohanthony it was Kate's idea!

A video posted by Marc Jacobs (@themarcjacobs) on

Does it feel like you're doing the same stuff that you were doing as a kid, and it's caught up with you?

Oh, yeah. Right now, it's just me doing what I love and I just have an audience of people who support me. That's the only difference. I'm so grateful for that.

How much time a week do you dedicate to your social media presence?

Social media like Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr, I do every day. Just whenever I pick up my phone, or my laptop or desktop or whatever. But my YouTube, since I upload twice a week, it's an entire day dedicated to both filming and editing, and maybe even an extra day if I need it. It takes a long time.

Do you feel pressure to keep making the videos even as you're working on separate, larger projects?

Oh, yeah. It's definitely a struggle keeping up with both my YouTube and being on set every day, but luckily I have viewers that understand that I am only human and can only do a certain amount of things at once.

When the basic bitch video came out, and that went as huge as it did, that was what pushed your social media presence into a larger stratosphere?

I guess so, that opened a lot of peoples' eyes to me. The moment I realized that something was actually happening [for me] was when I woke up and saw a tweet from Katy Perry, and I went to school and everyone had seen the tweet. It went from just uploading videos that no one saw, no one acknowledged, to my YouTube channel actually being something. It meant something to people, and it was a product. It was really weird at first, but I just have to say to myself, "Just keep doing your thing, just keep being you, no matter how much the numbers change. At the end of the day, people just want to see you." It was definitely weird. That same summer, I got noticed for the first time in public at my local mall in my hometown. I got asked for pictures, and to me, that was just super foreign and weird, but now it's something that I expect if I go to a public place. I expect to be confronted by my viewers, which I love so much.

Can you talk about how you deal with negative attention from people on the internet?

Underneath YouTube videos, obviously there's a comment section where people share their opinions, and some of it's good and some of it's bad. But when it is bad, I just remind myself that it is a good thing that I'm getting these hate comments, because if I was just to get all positive comments, it would just be from people who watch me and people who expect to see what they're seeing currently. 

If I have a hater, then that means that someone who does not watch my videos, is watching my videos, and that's actually good. It means I'm reaching a larger audience -- but when I do read it, it's just like, I don't really care. It doesn't really impact my life. I've gotten to the point where I have a huge, solid, strong wall when it comes to my confidence, so I just laugh at it. I actually have videos where I read my comments and laugh about it and react to them in a positive way. It's not a big deal.

Who are your favorite people to follow, and how do you find people that you follow?

I love GiGi Gorgeous on YouTube, I've been following her for so long, she's definitely one of my favorites.

Where do you see yourself and your career over the next few years?

I love acting so so so so so much, so hopefully in ten years you can catch me on set of a movie that I'm in a main role in, or something like that.

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