If you haven’t heard, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter are fading to a new social media platform called Vine—the world of six-second video clips. As our STEPHEN CHRISTOPHER finds, one of the queens of these shorts is actress Sunny Mabrey, with over half a million Viners (followers). Um, yeah, that’s like a lot.
Actress Sunny Mabrey is over Facebook, she’s long past Twitter, and now knee-deep in social media’s latest platform, Vine. Vine, if you haven’t heard, is a new app (the latest in the oligarchical social media world of Jack Dorsey, the genius behind Twitter). Vine allows you to shoot, edit, and upload tiny, six-second video clips that loop ad infinitum on any smartphone. Sunny already has nearly half a million Vine followers (a.k.a. the Viners).
Every day, the tall Alabama-born blonde works on a new video that takes her anywhere from five minutes to up to two days to produce. She schools me on the importance of this new technology. “Let’s not cast Vine off as some little social media thing that doesn’t mean anything. It’s really helped me in so many ways, both professionally (in getting acting gigs), socially (in meeting new friends), and creatively (in being an outlet for my crazy thoughts).”
Like all social media, getting followers is the game, and Sunny’s doing a damned good job. To give you some perspective, the top Viner is KingBach with 4 million followers, and right behind him is Brittany Furlan with 3.8 million. Sunny shares that her worldwide ranking is 132. “I’ve just been made privy to this website that I should never have been introduced to,” sighs the self-confessed worry wart, “RankZoo.com. I don’t like seeing stuff like that because it messes with my head.”
By far, Sunny’s most popular Vines are ones featuring her best friend, Lauren German, star of NBC’s Chicago Fire—and they are hysterical. The two play these over-the-top characters from like Minnesota, Pam and Rebecca. Sunny’s also created some other wacky recurring characters. “I play this one eleven-year-old boy with a bad lisp, and this one Russian girl who wants to be a black swan ballet dancer, but she’ll never make it—it’s kind of sad. Sometimes I don’t understand it, but the videos that make no sense seem to have the most likes and revines.”
Sunny, who graduated from the University of Mobile, refrains from reading the comments about her Vines. “Sometimes people can be hurtful, and so many are mean-spirited. I’ve gotten a little tougher. Like, they’ll make comments about how I have a big forehead, or they’ll say I’m ugly. I can deal when someone says that I’m ugly…superficial stuff is fine. The worst is when they say things that have some truth to them like, ‘You really didn’t put much time into this one, did you?’ Ouch! That will cut me to the core.”
Sunny shares that one of her saddest times was when, at thirteen, her parents divorced. But then, one year later, to her delight, they remarried. Ironically, after her own divorce from actor Ethan Embry a few years ago, the two are now happily dating again. To make everything beautiful, Ethan’s first ex-wife, Amelinda, is now one of Sunny’s closest friends and they’re working on writing a television pilot together.
If another walk down the aisle with Ethan is in her future, Sunny wouldn’t mind slipping her original wedding ring back on her finger. “I hated taking it off because it’s gorgeous. I honestly love that ring, it’s the most beautiful I’ve ever seen.” Fortunately, after the divorce, this fiery Sagittarius didn’t chuck it in the gutter or hock it for fifty bucks. Now there’s material for her next Vine.
Art Direction: Stephen Kamifuji
Photographer: Verity Jane Smith / VerityJaneSmith.com
Stylist: Lisa Cera / LisaCStyles.com
Hair: Jeremy Clark for Jeremy Clark Salon / AimArtist.com
Makeup: Kirsten Simitzi / KirstenSimitzi.com using FACE atelier
Manicure: Denise Bourne / SiriusArtists.com
Photo Assistants: Ian Barling, Jolie Kinga
Location: Aesthesia Studios / Culver City / AesthesiaStudios.com