The Museum of Hoaxes
hoax archive hoax archive hoax archive hoax archive hoax archive
   
Hoaxes Throughout History
Middle AgesEarly Modern1700s1800-1840s1850-1890s
1900s1910s1920s1930s1940s1950s1960s1970s1980s1990s21st Century2014
Fred and Sharon’s Movies
Nick Foister sent me a link to Fred and Sharon's Movies, which have become the latest viral video sensation. Fred and Sharon are a couple who claim to run a movie production business in Kelowna, Canada. But their movies are so bad they're actually funny. It takes talent to be that bad.

They have over 20 videos on youtube. If you haven't seen any of them, at least watch "Who Needs a Movie?" (below), in which they try to promote their movie production business.



Fred and Sharon also have a website. Their site was originally free and open, but the majority of it has recently been locked down so that you need to pay to see it. However, the fee is only $1, so I paid the buck. Turns out that all the "extra content" you get if you pay is simply more videos freely available on youtube. I would have felt cheated if I had paid more than $1, but since it was so little I didn't mind. They deserve it for producing some amusing content.

The question that many people are wondering is whether Fred and Sharon can possibly be for real. Or are they either a) the creations of an advertising agency, or b) comedians.

I haven't had much luck shedding light on this mystery. Though my gut feeling is that they're genuine. It's their effort to make people pay for their site that most makes me think they're genuine. An ad agency would never try to restrict access to content. But a couple like Fred and Sharon who suddenly start receiving hundreds of thousands of visitors to their site, and are faced with a huge bandwidth charge, probably would decide they need to make some money to cover the costs.

Fred and Sharon's site is registered to someone called Rob Korbynn. The only info I can find out about him is that he also seems to be the webmaster of The Ram's Horn, an Ontario-based journal about "food systems analysis." I'm guessing he's must be a guy who provides web services such as site design to clients in the Ontario area.

Even though I do think Fred and Sharon and for real, I also think they're now purposefully hamming it up for the camera. After all, they must realize they've suddenly got a huge audience.
Photos/Videos
Posted by The Curator on Tue Mar 25, 2008


I've been following Fred and Sharon eagerly, and I'm convinced they're real. The only question to me is to what extent they're aware they're being laughed at/with, and thus to what extent they're kinda playing along now they've found fame/notoriety.

They're in Kelowna, in the lower BC interior, by the way, not Ontario. There's lots of local footage in the videos to verify this.
Posted by Dave Rattigan  in  Liverpool, England  on  Tue Mar 25, 2008  at  11:57 AM
Sorry, I see you were talking about the guy the site's registered to - not Fred and Sharon - when you said Ontario.
Posted by Dave Rattigan  in  Liverpool, England  on  Tue Mar 25, 2008  at  11:58 AM
Wait a sec, if Rob Corbynn is in Ontario and the couple are in BC, that's quite a distance - a couple thousand miles or more; say 4 or 5 thousand kilometers. That strikes me as suspicious.
Posted by Christopher Cole  in  Tucson, AZ  on  Tue Mar 25, 2008  at  01:33 PM
I posted a "Fred and Sharon Crapolicious Film Festival" and am 98.6% certain they're legitimate. I've worked in TV/video for over 20 years and think that if they were a hoax, their vids would be worse (although "Who Needs A Movie" is just awful).
Posted by Scott Schaefer  in  Seattle, WA  on  Tue Mar 25, 2008  at  02:23 PM
Ah, Alex, you just think they're real because the Loch Ness Monster shows up in the opening credits of "Who Needs a Movie?"

The movie looks to me like they're trying a little too hard to be bad. Really talentless artists at least try to make their stuff good, which is where all the irony and dramatic tension comes from.

Fred and Sharon certainly ARE Canadian, though-- they pronounce "house" as "hoose."
Posted by Big Gary  in  Alamo, Texas  on  Tue Mar 25, 2008  at  02:29 PM
Opening credits? I meant to say, Nessie's in the closing credits.
Aaaahhhggh.
Posted by Big Gary  in  Alamo, Texas  on  Tue Mar 25, 2008  at  02:49 PM
I work with a guy from Kelowna who turned me onto this who F&S;stuff. He claims that they're real but to make sure, he's making some calls to his folks in Kelowna to do some detective work.
Posted by johnny  in  Vancouver, BC  on  Tue Mar 25, 2008  at  02:50 PM
Actually, Gary, that's Ogopogo in the closing credits. It's the Okanagan's alternative to Nessie!
Posted by Dave Rattigan  in  Liverpool, England  on  Tue Mar 25, 2008  at  03:01 PM
Anybody remember Dave Thomas & Andrea Martin's hilarious commercials on SCTV for "Tex & Edna Boil's Prairie Emporium"?

These ads are remarkably similar! There'a bunch of them on Youtube, too. Just do a search for "Tex edna".

Here's one:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LWQl9jdKUmM

(I do also think these guys are real, though.)
Posted by Josh W.  in  LA  on  Tue Mar 25, 2008  at  03:13 PM
Anybody remember Dave Thomas & Andrea Martin's hilarious commercials for "Tex & Edna Boil's Prairie Emporium" on SCTV?

These commercials are remarkably similar. Here's one (but you can find tons by doing a search for "Tex Edna"):

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LWQl9jdKUmM

I do think these guys are real though.
Posted by Josh W.  in  LA  on  Tue Mar 25, 2008  at  03:17 PM
You need to visit a small town (a real small town, not merely a suburb) sometime. You'll see.
Posted by K  on  Tue Mar 25, 2008  at  06:27 PM
I feel it's almost completely authentic, and all the more valuable therein.

I think if there was any hint of parody, the "script" would have had a flub or joke in it, but on it's own it's pretty straight forward.

People trying to be funny, usually try to be funny everywhere.
Posted by j k  in  LA  on  Tue Mar 25, 2008  at  08:25 PM
The Worst Fimakers In The World Award surely goes to the Brothers Polonia, namely Mark and his recently deceased twin John (J.J.), of Wellsboro, Pa. Their screen credits include "Splatter Farm", "Saurians", and some other crap so bad I can't even remember the titles. I mean, these films, really, really suck. They were distributed on VHS by the National Video store chain in the 90's, but I don't know if they're available in any other form, DVD or You-Tube snippets included. The special effects are incredibly bad, the sound horrible, the scripts and dialogue are leaden beyond belief, and the acting should in no way be confused with any real thespian talent. Having said all that, taken as a whole, their efforts rival the immortal Ed Wood in the sincere belief by the Brothers that they were truly making films worth watching. Truly so bad, they are good, I give you, Mark and John, the Bros. Palonia. Google and Enter at your own risk
Posted by Hairy Houdini  on  Tue Mar 25, 2008  at  10:02 PM
I got interested in the Fred & Sharon story a couple of weeks ago via one of my favourite websites, b3ta.com.

I blogged about them myself and wondered if they might be a hoax, a joke, a viral marketing campaign or whatever; And so emailed Alex and asked him to lend his expertise to the matter.

Alex has done (as always) excellent investigative work here and now I'm pretty sure that Fred & Sharon are for real. I'm sure their internet fame has not yet reached its peak, and they'll end up being right up there with the star wars kid!

Good luck to them, and I hope they make some money out of it grin
Posted by Nick Foister  in  UK  on  Wed Mar 26, 2008  at  12:00 AM
Max Headroom lives!
Posted by KDP  in  Madill, Oklahoma  on  Wed Mar 26, 2008  at  04:17 PM
I also blogged about this last week: http://tinyurl.com/25ehrm

Hmm, I'm not sure. I'm still undecided really. Funny though regardless of the truth.
Posted by Mark Iddon  in  UK  on  Wed Mar 26, 2008  at  04:55 PM
It strikes me as very similar to Tim and Eric's Awesome Show, great job!
Posted by happle  on  Wed Mar 26, 2008  at  11:42 PM
anyone tried out the phonenumber at the end of the video?
maybe then you can find out if it is real or not
Posted by frank  on  Fri Mar 28, 2008  at  11:05 AM
A MetaFilter user interviewed them, and is sure they're legit:

http://icanhaz.com/videomovie
Posted by Jack  in  Glasgow  on  Fri Mar 28, 2008  at  03:46 PM
I contact a musician who was credited at the end of the "Tribute to Students & Troops" video and asked him about Fred & Sharon -- actors or real? He responded to me with this:

"Fred and Sharon are not actors, they run a small baking business in Peachland and sell their breads at the local farmers markets. The movies are consistent with their characters, and they are serious about it. I do see why people would wonder though. They do make one of the greatest sandwich breads ever, and are really nice people."

Peachland is a name given to the Kelowna/Vernon area of British Columbia.

If you watch Fred's you tube video where he replies to someone's farmer's market video (in boulder) you can tell he's the real deal. I hope this helps settle this! I am also awaiting response from them myself for an interview.
Posted by Johnny  in  Vancouver, British Columbia  on  Fri Mar 28, 2008  at  10:15 PM
OK....
- Peachland is its own municipality in BC
- I can't believe this was ever thought to be a hoax-- having grown up in this place, there are so many dubious small businesses and people of limited talent trying to make a buck it isn't even funny!
Posted by frewheeler  in  bc  on  Sat Mar 29, 2008  at  05:48 PM
i must watch that movie :D
Posted by Andrews  in  USA  on  Thu Apr 03, 2008  at  09:11 AM
my lord. i'm from kelowna and so embarassed that i am from the same city as these two! i've never seen or heard of them before, but i'm going to keep my eyes peeled hahahaah
Posted by Carly  in  Kelowna  on  Fri Apr 11, 2008  at  01:18 AM
JOHNNY:

Peachland is a district municipality. Kelowna is a city, Vernon is a smaller city about an hour north, and about 30 minutes south of Kelowna is the district of Peachland. It is not "a name given to the Kelowna/Vernon area of British Columbia." I see you're from Vancouver - that would be like (for example) calling Burnaby a "name given to the Vancouver/Surrey area." So, in essence, Peachland is a small town south of Kelowna.
Posted by Janice  in  Kelowna, BC  on  Fri Apr 11, 2008  at  01:25 AM
Holy Crap what an stupid idiot I is am. I'll make sure to NEVER refer to Kelowna/Vernon area as the Peachland area EVER AGAIN!!! I am really glad I am now clear on the geographical situation of the Peachland area. I mean, could you imagine if this were Jeopardy and it was a daily double and I risked it all!?! I'd have to work extremely hard at getting some money back so I'd have something to wager for Final Jeopardy! "What is the Peachland Area, Alex!?" Oh dear, the look on fellow Canadian Alex's face would really make me feel like a heel. I wonder if the Peachland area has any community service work I could do to make up for this audacious mistake!?
Posted by johnny  in  Vancouver  on  Fri Apr 11, 2008  at  02:36 AM
Wow, this is the first time I've seen these people. The video is a riot!
Posted by Steve  in  USA  on  Fri Jan 09, 2009  at  12:05 AM
Yes, the stuff is real. I am just providing web space for Fred. I did the initial site which went viral.
Unfortunately, I did not have the upload capability at that time to help Fred capitalize on the traffic.
Things have been fixed now.
Posted by Rob Korbynn  in  Vernon BC  on  Sun Jun 06, 2010  at  01:18 PM
Commenting is no longer available in this channel entry.
All text Copyright © 2014 by Alex Boese, except where otherwise indicated. All rights reserved.