Bad Lip Reading is a YouTube channel that makes videos dubbing TV shows, political speeches, political debates, campaign ads, and any other video that has been on television. They voice over the clips so perfectly, you wouldn't even think that they were dubbing anything. Their most viewed video has got more than 51 million views to date.
The "Bad Lip Reader" behind the channel is an anonymous music and video producer. The first Bad Lip Reading video released was a spoof of Rebecca Black's song "Friday", titled "Gang Fight". New music and lyrics were matched to Black's video to make it appear as though she were singing about gang warfare. The "Gang Fight" YouTube video, released in March 2011, earned BLR a million hits and thousands of subscribers.
More spoof videos followed, including interpretations of The Black Eyed Peas' "Boom Boom Pow" (a viral video called "Everybody Poops"), Taylor Swift's "Our Song" and Michael Bublé's "Haven't Met You Yet". The latter was transformed into the "electronica inspired" "Russian Unicorn", which Bublé himself praised as his "new favorite song" and "one of the coolest things I've ever seen."
In September 2011, BLR branched out from pop singers to politicians with a "bad lip-reading" of Texas governor and US Presidential hopeful Rick Perry. BLR replaced clips of Perry with invented dialogue matched to his lip movements. After airing on Ellen DeGeneres' show, the video was featured by news and media outlets across the United States, leading to a sudden surge in Bad Lip Reading's popularity. Following the Perry spoof, BLR released bad lip-readings of President Obama, Republican presidential candidates Michele Bachmann, Mitt Romney, Herman Cain, Ron Paul, Newt Gingrich, and Rick Santorum.
The channel found even more success in November 2012 when it began overdubbing popular movie and televisions shows. BLR's version of "Twilight" quickly went viral, followed by Bad Lip-Readings of "The Hunger Games", "The Walking Dead", and "Game of Thrones". The videos have been well-received not only by the public, but also by the cast and creators of the properties being spoofed. In her online blog, Elizabeth Banks, Jennifer Lawrence's co-star in The Hunger Games, said, "Bad Lip Reading is awesome. I was introduced to it by none other than Jennifer Lawrence. Yup - she saw this, people. And she laughed. And so did I. A lot." Lawrence's co-star Josh Hutcherson also praised the video, tweeting it to his fans. The cast and creators of The Walking Dead have publicly praised the Bad Lip Reading "Walking Dead" videos on several occasions.
Expanding his scope yet again, in January 2013 BLR released a "bad lip-reading" of National Football League players, coaches and referees, a video that would go on to become the channel's most popular video. A second NFL video followed in 2014, and a third was released in 2015.
In a Rolling Stone interview, the producer behind the Bad Lip Reading videos said that he first encountered the technique of lip reading when his mother, then in her 40s, lost her hearing due to unknown causes. While she excelled at lip reading, he was unable to pick up the skill despite trying: "I was terrible at it."
In 2013, Bad Lip Reading won the Webby Awards' "People's Choice" Award for Best Comedy Series. In April 2014, BLR won the American Comedy Award for Best Viral video for its "NFL: A Bad Lip Reading" video. Patrick Stewart accepted the award on BLR's behalf during the televised ceremony on NBC.
On June 8, 2014 the BLR Facebook page announced the release of the full version of "Modify" by Kniles, a song that has been used in multiple BLR productions. The fact that this song was used without previous attribution, as well as stylistic similarities to other BLR-produced songs, have prompted speculation that Kniles is another pseudonym for the individual behind Bad Lip Reading.
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