Among the eruption of excitement online following Korean film Parasite‘s historic Oscars run on Sunday, a particular trend took over social media that surprisingly had little to do with thirsting over Vanity Fair after-party gossip. It’s definitely thirsty, though.
People began posting compilations of actors and other big names in Hollywood serving looks in their movies or at events, set to sexy rap songs (“Beef FloMix” by Flo Milli is by far the most popular choice), accompanied by the phrase “fuck it, ____ fancam.”
fuck it timothée chalamet oscars fancam pic.twitter.com/e5DA7WBdOv— 𝓀𝒶𝓎 (@kylesscheibles) February 10, 2020
FUCK IT OSCAR AWARD WINNER TAIKA WAITITI FANCAM pic.twitter.com/4GnSwokUQC— ana (@wlwsyd) February 10, 2020
Many on Twitter were quick to adopt it, expanding these so-called “fancams” to highlight people like Parasite director Bong Joon Ho’s noted interpreter, Sharon Choi, and even to outside of the Oscars scene, to other actors like Ethan Hawke and their favorite Love Island contestants. But what many people may not know is that this trend stems directly from K-pop fandom, and means something pretty different.
If you’ve spent time on Twitter you’ve probably come across K-pop fancams before — likely in the context of the replies of a controversial tweet. (More on that later). Basically, a fancam is footage focusing on a single member of a band, usually while the group is performing. It can also be used for solo artists, because different fans will capture different points of view of the same event. Any fan’s footage can be a fancam, though many die-hards like to follow fansites for more professional footage of their favorite member. Fansites are websites run by one or multiple fans who are dedicated to one specific idol or group. They follow the artists to their varied appearances, and use high-quality equipment to capture photos and videos and upload them online. The practice has become so popular in Korea that TV broadcast stations sometimes upload their own high-quality fancams after posting a full performance on YouTube.
The definition has expanded somewhat from its origin. Fancams now include footage of musicians reacting to other performances at award shows, or interacting with their fans at fansign events. Some have helped bolster a song’s popularity, like EXID’s 2014 song “Up & Down,” or even that of an idol, like BTS’ Jimin after performing a cover of Shinhwa’s “Perfect Man” in 2015.
One of the most interesting evolutions of the K-pop fancam is its transition from praise to distraction. Recently, it’s been used to throw shade or troll a particular controversial tweet or person. Fans will flood the replies to a — in their eyes — bad tweet with “anyways, stan ____” and a fancam, diverting the attention away from whatever that original tweet set out to achieve. Or they’ll just chime in on a particular polarizing topic and add a fancam — stan twitter’s ultimate tongue-in-cheek move.
It’s understandable, therefore, that some K-pop fans are confused as to why these new compilations of Hollywood’s finest have been called “fancams.” Especially since these kinds of complications have also already existed within the K-pop fandom on Twitter and Instagram for years, but are usually regarded as fan “edits.”
I think y’all should give kunmacarena a lot of love pic.twitter.com/U4rKHw6HgM— kun the best boy (@kunisgrace) January 6, 2020
But while the terminology might be different, the thirst is definitely universal.
Like what you see? How about some more R29 goodness, right here?