Mr. Beast is Jumping Ahead of the Pack by Recreating ‘Squid Game’ in Real Life

How Squid Game IRL took over the world.


Jonas Augustin / Unsplash

Jimmy ‘Mr. Beast’ Donaldson’s recreation of Squid Game, the hit Netflix show, in real life, has become one of the most popular YouTube channels of 2022.

Jimmy ‘Mr. Beast’ Donaldson is one of the most popular YouTubers on the planet. As of the publication of this article, he has amassed over 88 million subscribers, earning a place in the top 10 most subscribed channels of all time. The North Carolina native has created a video style that would be unheard of a decade ago, giving away immense amounts of money and spending millions of dollars on each of his videos. His newest video set the bar even higher: recreating Squid Game, the hit Netflix show, in real life. 

On October 11th, 2021, Mr. Beast released a TikTok video claiming that he would recreate the popular Netflix Original in real life if he received 10 million likes. Here he is using demand marketing by getting people to be excited about a project and generating hype.

As the weeks came and went, Donaldson kept the excitement up by posting more TikToks and tweets showing the sets his team was creating. 

Possibly the most fascinating part of Mr. Beast’s magnum opus has almost nothing to do with the video itself. It is how he used it as a platform for a massive, multi-channel collaboration event. In particular, a video by Mathew Beem shows him building the giant doll that is in the first game of the video, “Red Light Green Light.” His video is hectic, witty, and everything you would expect from someone trying to impress a creator whom he admires. 

What stands out is that the Mathew Beem video came out weeks before the actual Squid game video. While behind-the-scenes videos are common among YouTubers creating big projects (for example, Dave from Boyinaband released videos breaking down how he helped write songs with YouTubers such as PewDiePie, TheOdd1sOut, and JaidenAnimations), they release after the fact. Mr. Beast’s decision to let this video come out before the big project demonstrates his incredible foresight, as he used the videos to build anticipation for the eventual release. 

The other main video to come out on the making of Mr. Beast’s Squid Game was SoKrispyMedia’s ‘Making MrBeast’s Squid Game in 10 Days.’SoKrispyMedia is a professional VFX team with an abundance of real-world experience. Donaldson took them on to create visual effects for things that would be impossible to do realistically, such as Tug of War and the Glass Tile game. According to their video, they had “to [edit] as many shots as The Matrix had in just ten days.” The video gives a sense of just how massive the Mr. Beast empire is.

Another massive bump for viewership was reaction videos, which have become a staple of internet culture. Given the popularity of Mr. Beast’s video, reaction creators tagged along. However, they weren’t the only ones getting in on the fun. Massive creators like PewDiePie, who has the most subscribed channel of any individual creator, and xQc, the biggest streamer on twitch, made dedicated videos on the subject.

The final way that the video gained traction was through the viewers of Mr. Beast, on the internet on Twitter, Instagram, TikTok, and numerous other major social media platforms. There were many differing opinions on the Squid Game replica. Some people were arguing about whether it was disrespectful or missed the point or talking about the viewership compared to the actual Squid Game.

What does the future hold for Mr. Beast and his YouTube channel? Well, in an interview with Colin and Samir, he said, “Long term in the future, like 3 years from now, I would love to get to the point where we are uploading original, giant, never before seen, better than everyone else, huge, ginormous, the best videos in the world…twice a week.” Nothing seems like it will get in Donaldson’s way on his path to becoming the king of YouTube.

There were many differing opinions on the Squid Game replica. Some people were arguing about whether it was disrespectful or missed the point or talking about the viewership compared to the actual Squid Game.