Chris Crocker: from YouTube to boob tube

Pity anyone who has been trying to get attention for their YouTube videos in the past week or so. Why? Because the past week has belonged solely to Chris Crocker, the pseudonym of a young gay man who reportedly lives with his grandmother in a small town in Tennessee, and makes videos in his closet.

One of those videos — in which a crying and screaming Crocker tells people to “leave Britney alone” as mascara runs down his face — has gotten almost eight million views on YouTube. I have embedded it here so that you can experience the full Chris Crocker effect in person.

Crocker has now been signed to a TV production deal with 44 Blue Productions, according to a note in Variety magazine. The company says it plans to create a show around the YouTube star and his life as a gay man in a small U.S. town. “It’s going to pretty much be the ‘Chris Crocker experience,'” a spokesman for the production house said. “We consider him a rebel character that people will find interesting. He’s going to be a TV star.”

Not only is YouTube home to Chris Crocker’s video clips — which are available on his YouTube page here — but now there are parodies of his Britney video as well (in which he defends her after her recent train-wreck performance on the MTV Video Awards). One of the most popular is by Seth Green, the comedian/actor/writer who starred in the Austin Powers movies and who writes and produces the Robot Chicken show.

Crocker has also been interviewed on Jimmy Kimmel Live (via iChat from his home in Tennessee), and was recently the subject of a fairly long feature piece — called “Escape from Real Bitch Island” — in The Stranger, an alternative newspaper in Seattle. In the story, it says that a former Hollywood producer for Entertainment Tonight had approached Crocker about basing a reality show on his life.

If you’re interested, Wikipedia has more.

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