• 08.31.10

Life in a Day Video, From YouTube and Ridley Scott, Is Now Live

The “world’s largest user-generated film,” Life in a Day, is being constructed by Ridley Scott and Kevin MacDonald. But you can get a sneak preview of the videos that will be used in the montage right now.


YouTube’s “Life in a Day” project is an ambitious filmmaking exercise in which thousands of people around the world document their lives, and some film industry veterans cut, chop, and paste all that footage into a coherent documentary. It’s a monumental challenge, but the names attached–most importantly Ridley Scott, serving as executive producer, and Kevin MacDonald (director of The Last King of Scotland, not the similarly named member of Kids in the Hall)–provide some reassurance that maybe, just maybe, the film won’t suck.

The footage, all of which was shot on Saturday, July 24th, comes from 197 countries and is in 45 languages, and totals over 80,000 separate videos. And today, you can get a feel for the huge task in front of Scott and MacDonald, because Google just put all the videos online.

LG is also aboard as a partner, curating a separate section called “Smile” that highlights “positive and inspiring” videos. It’s cheesy, as is LG’s official statement (which is little more than the repetition of the company’s slogan, with a few filler words for syntax), but it’s not a bad idea. In fact, Google allows the filtering of videos by mood, including “thoughtful,” “depressed,” “excited,” and “lonely,” so you can exclusively watch videos of lonely people, if that’s your weird thing.

The film itself is being constructed now, and will premiere simultaneously at Sundance and on YouTube in January 2011.

Dan Nosowitz, the author of this post, can be followed on Twitter, corresponded with via email, and stalked in Brooklyn (no link for that one–you’ll have to do the legwork yourself).

About the author

Dan Nosowitz is a freelance writer and editor who has written for Popular Science, The Awl, Gizmodo, Fast Company, BuzzFeed, and elsewhere. He holds an undergraduate degree from McGill University and currently lives in Brooklyn, because he has a beard and glasses and that's the law.