Will the Viral ‘Sharknado’ Storm Strike Again?


By Molly Freeman

Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

Last summer, the Syfy network’s made-for-TV movie Sharknado took the internet–and most movie buffs–by storm. The creature feature had a simple story: a superstorm filled with sharks battered Los Angeles. Sounds pretty silly, right? But those on social media loved it.

During the premiere of Sharknado on Syfy, the movie’s title became a trending topic on Twitter because users generated tweets at a rate of 5,000 a minute. Sharknado’s first night on TV clocked in at 1.4 million viewers, but subsequent broadcasts reached 1.9 million, then 2.1 million audience members. Following the television success, Syfy took the b-movie sensation to show in theaters for a single night.

Shortly following Sharknado’s success Syfy granted the film a sequel, which will air tomorrow night on the television channel. But the question on every movie fans mind is: will Sharknado 2: The Second One live up to its predecessor in terms of b-movie camp and viral reach?

The trailer for Sharknado 2 certainly played up the fact that no one expected a film about shark-filled tornados–starring two actors that have flown under the radar since the ‘90s, Ian Ziering and Tara Reid–to be such a viral success. The promo also features plenty of campy moments and not-so-great computer generated effects that are the trademark of most science fiction b-movies and helped to make the original Sharknado a must-see event.

Whether or not Sharknado 2 will see the same furor on Twitter remains to be seen, though Syfy is building plenty of hype around the movie’s premiere. Director of both Sharknado films, Anthony C. Ferante was joined by stars of The Second One, Ziering, Vivica A. Fox, and Judah Freelander, for a panel at San Diego Comic-Con last week. In recent weeks, Ziering made an appearance on a staple of the children’s network, Sprout: The Sunny Side Up Show. Additionally, the main cast–Ziering, Fox, Reid, Kari Wuhrer, and Mark McGrath–were featured in a spread on GQ’s website.

With all this promotion and the leftover buzz from Sharknado’s premiere last summer, will Sharknado 2: The Second One be another hit? We’ll have to wait until it debuts Jul 30 on Syfy to see.