Disney drops YouTube star over hate videos
WALT DISNEY is ending its affiliation with the world’s highest-paid YouTube star, PewDiePie, after the 27-year-old uploaded a series of videos featuring antisemitic comments and jokes.
PewDiePie — whose real name is Felix Kjellberg — posted one video featuring two men laughing while holding a sign that read, “Death to all Jews”, and another showing a man dressed as Jesus saying, “Hitler did absolutely nothing wrong”.
Kjellberg has over 53 million YouTube subscribers, and reportedly makes more than $14 million a year. He struck a deal with Disney’s Maker Studios in 2014, which gave him coownership of a multi-channel network called Revelmode that produces videos, mobile apps and merchandise.
“Although Felix has created a following by being provocative and irreverent, he clearly went too far in this case and the resulting videos are inappropriate,” a spokesperson for Maker Studios said in a statement.
In response, Kjellberg wrote a blog post on Sunday stating that he was “trying to show how crazy the modern world is… I am in no way supporting any kind of hateful attitudes”.