By Alison Willmore | Indiewire July 12, 2013 at 1:00PM
The so-bad-it's-great "mockbuster" "Sharknado" -- which, as promised by its delightful title, is about a tornado filled with sharks that ravages Los Angeles (something we weren't warned about in "An Inconvenient Truth"), became a huge hit on Twitter as it premiered on Syfy last night. Live-tweeting/mocking/celebrating of the made-for-TV movie, which stars Tara Reid and Ian Ziering and comes from low-budget experts The Asylum, became a spontaneous phenomenon that united cinephiles, stoners, celebrities and everyone else who stumbled across the broadcast in social media delight, bumping "#sharknado" up to a trending topic.
The Twitter love did not, however, translate to identical ratings. According to the LA Times, early Nielsen numbers have "Sharknado" at an audience of just over 1 million people and only a 0.4 rating in the 18-49 demographic. In comparison, March's Erik Estrada-led "Chupacabra vs. the Alamo" garnered a 0.3 rating for adults 18-49 -- and, unlike "Sharknado," that feature wasn't generating nearly 5,000 tweets a minute. Still, the social media success of "Sharknado" has led Syfy to schedule an encore presentation of the film for Thursday, July 18 at 7pm.
Below, some of our favorite comments from the "Sharknado" Twitter takeover.
How is it possible that I followed 1000 classic-film fans and they are all watching something called #sharknado?— Farran Nehme (@selfstyledsiren) July 12, 2013
Omg omg OMG #sharknado— mia farrow (@MiaFarrow) July 12, 2013
I'm not so sure about the science in this movie you guys. #SharkNado— Wil Wheaton (@wilw) July 12, 2013
I had believed that truly universal pop culture had died with mass media, with Michael Jackson, with the Tonight Show. But then #Sharknado.— Anil Dash (@anildash) July 12, 2013
Ian zeiring just chainsawed his way out of a sharks anus. #Sharknado Great movie.— Judah Friedlander (@JudahWorldChamp) July 12, 2013
Score's a triumph for new random-sound-generation software #Sharknado— Kurt Loder (@kurt_loder) July 12, 2013
No way is SHARKNADO as entertaining as the Tweets about it. Congrats, @SyfyTV. You've created a new way to watch movies.— Patton Oswalt (@pattonoswalt) July 12, 2013
Well, now that we've tracked, shot, and captured the zeitgeist, I think I can retire for the evening. Another full #Sharknado day tomorrow!— The Asylum (@theasylumcc) July 12, 2013