Cats Already Own the Internet; Next Up Is the Jumbotron


They hoped for maybe 5,000 people. Instead, they got twice that many — and more worldwide publicity than they could ever have imagined. Judging from a recent article in HuffPost, Scott Stulen, the project director for the 2012 Internet Cat Video Festival, which was held at the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota, is still sort of in shock about how popular the festival was.

But that hasn’t stopped him from helping to put together the second annual Internet Cat Video Festival, which will happen August 28 at the Minnesota State Fairgrounds, and then taking the show on the road.

In fact, San Francisco Bay Area residents will soon get a chance to see the Walker Art Center’s feline film fest in person. On May 11, from 3 to 10 p.m., the Great Wall of Oakland will shine with kitty antics from the cute to the utterly existential. The festival benefits the no-kill East Bay SPCA, and cats and kittens from that facility as well as two other Bay Area rescues will be available for adoption.

When you’ve got 5,000 cat lovers in one place, it just makes sense to have kitties available for adoption — and be on the hunt for foster homes.

Dusty the Klepto Kitty will be guest of honor at the Oakland Internet Cat Video Festival.

Not to be outdone, New Yorkers have made sure that the cat video festival comes their way, too. “Internet Cat Video Film Festival Coming To Brooklyn, Where It Belongs,” a Gothamist blog headline proclaims. Clearly some people don’t think Podunk towns like Minneapolis and Oakland are good enough for such hip, cool happenings.

The New York festival will take place October 25 at the Warsaw (whose tagline is, I kid you not, “Where pierogies meet punk”).

Despite the cultural arrogance of a certain subset of New York-based commentators, the Brooklyn Internet Cat Video festival will still be cool. It’ll have appearances by celebrity cats, just like other cat video festivals. Dusty the Klepto Kitty will be the guest of honor at the Oakland festival, but New York organizers are still keeping mum about their celebrikitty.

But wait, it gets better! Internet cat videos have gone meta!

The Tribeca Film Festival is featuring a documentary called Lil Bub & Friendz, the synopsis of which reads, in part, “Eager to meet the rest of the Web’s famous cats, Mike and Bub hit the road on a wild cross-country romp to get to know all of the Internet’s biggest cat-lebrities: Nyan Cat, Grumpy Cat, the late Keyboard Cat and a few aspiring new cat starlets. They even … make an appearance at the inaugural Cat Video Film Festival.”

You can watch Lil Bub & Friendz online any time you want — it’s only an hour or so long — and if you need a cute fix, this might just do the trick.

I’ve actually bought a ticket for this year’s second annual Cat Video Festival. It remains to be seen whether I can get myself out there for said festival, of course, but I’m gonna do my best.

It looks like Internet cat video festivals have now officially become a thing. Where will they pop up next? Is there one happening in your area? Do you want a cat video festival to come to your city? Let us know!

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