'Fake Famous' Trailer: A Social Media Experiment Explores Fame And Influence In The Digital Age

Thanks to our society's obsession with social media, one of the most in-demand careers among today's teens is that of a famous social media influencer. However, as with many things on the internet, this seemingly glamorous and care-free lifestyle isn't quite what it's cracked up to be, and a new HBO documentary will teach that lesson in an interesting way.

Fake Famous, from technology journalist Nick Bilton, conducts an experiment that turns three everyday people with a desire for fame into social media influencers with an army of follows. But there's one catch: all the followers these people are about to get are completely fake. Watch how this all comes together in the trailer below.

Fake Famous Trailer

Fake Famous starts off with a casting call looking to find three charismatic people with eyes on being famous on social media. They land on an aspiring actress Dominique, fashion designer Chris, and real estate assistant Wylie, and as they're each given thousands of fake followers each day, they begin to experience the whirlwind world of being a social media influencer. While it comes with the benefit of free stuff, it also comes with certain expectations, consequences, and perhaps a painful realization.

Though the experiment uses fake followers to build the "influence" of these everyday people, the results are very real. Their reactions, the involvement of various brands looking for a social media presence, and the changing perspective on their dream job is all very real, even though they're not really becoming social media influences with thousands of followers. It looks like a necessary exposure of this hollow industry and hopefully an important lesson for those who need to have their eyes opened to what it's really like to be a famous social media influencer.

Fake Famous explores the industry of social media influencers through an innovative social experiment. The film's journey into this world is driven by the casting of three people in Los Angeles who all have relatively small social followings and the attempt to grow them into famous influencers. By purchasing fake followers and an army of bots to "engage" with their social media, the newly made "influencers" discover both the wonders and costs of this unlikely, immersive lifestyle.

Peeling back the layers to reveal what's really happening behind the scenes of influencer fame, Fake Famous illuminates our obsession with the numbers of likes, followers and favorites we get, and how most of our online world is much more fabricated than we realize.

Fake Famous premieres on HBO on February 2 at 9:00 P.M. ET and will be available on HBO Max afterwards.