(Who is Paint? His name is Jon Cozart.)
After a few hours spent snorting and laughing, I decided to give the po-tay-toes song a rest (I was hungry). So instead of clicking replay for the 71st time, I actually let the video finish.
At the end, YouTube threw up a bunch of suggestions of other LOTR-related videos – I perused a few and eventually came across a video that featured a good looking kid that sang an encapsulated version of the entire Lord of the Rings trilogy in 99 seconds. I was intrigued.
At the end, it prompted me to subscribe to a YouTube account called “Paint“. Click. I was intrigued to see the user(s)’ other videos and I was curious to find out the names of the two guys in the video – were they a friends? A couple? A couple friends?
The YouTube page didn’t really say, so I searched on “who is paint youtube” and was shocked that the answer wasn’t readily available in the first few listings. No Wikipedia page. No other blog posts. Nothing. So I decided to create a Who is Paint YouTube post.
It turns out Paint is just one guy, and his real name is Jon Cozart. He’s completely a one-man show (the LOTR video is just him with short hair / long hair).
Last year, Cozart became YouTube-famous for creating a Disney parody video called “After Ever After” that garnered him a lot of press and minor fame.
Originally from Arkansas, Cozart lives in Austin, and attends University of Texas – Austin where he majors in Film. He tried out for Glee. And judging by the amount of views his videos get, he’s making some good cash from his work. He’s mentioned that he’s not struggling because he sells his MP3s on iTunes.
Apparently, he also has multiple personalities.
[UPDATE 1] Unfortunately, Paint uses “Chinaman” in his parody video – not knowing it was a slur. Cozart explains his mindset in this Washington Post article. I liked that he asked his parents whether it was a slur or not, but really, internet.
[UPDATE 2] Hmmm, I just came across this unfortunate lyric in his Share the Love video:
And I just wanted to say
I love you, I love you
I love you more than Asians love homework
I love you
What seemed like just a simple mistake now seems more like lazy, willful ignorance. And just because it’s in a song and playful, it’s okay to play up Asian stereotypes. So much for benefit of the doubt.