TikTok sensation James Henry discusses how he found success on the social media app, his hopes to one day follow in the footsteps of Will Smith and Martin Lawerence, and more in this exclusive interview.
Founded by Emmy winning journalist Maria Menounos and Producer Keven Undergaro, AfterBuzz TV is the artist-friendly entertainment news platform that celebrates, discusses, interviews, promotes and reports on the widest range of stars, creators and content through video, audio and article publications.
If you love a good laugh every now and then, you have to check out TikTok sensation James Henry – the comedian posts a variety of hilarious videos that have garnered him more than 3 million followers.
James spoke with Benny Adams about his rise to success on the social media platform and how he plans to take that success to the big screen.
Many might be familiar with James from TikTok, but he’s actually been in the game for a while, creating content for viewers before the social networking app even came to be.
“I guess it all started during the Vine days. I’m one of those people that were on Vine. After the platform went down, it took awhile for me to figure out what platform would be my next home, and whether or not I wanted to continue to create content,” explained Henry. “I went through the motions of going through Instagram, YouTube, and Snapchat, and everything felt like it was okay, but nothing felt like it was right for me, especially since there wasn’t another short form video content during that time. When Musical.ly came out, I joined and thrived on there, and then it merged into TikTok.”
Just like Vine, James found success on TikTok by creating a variety of content for old and new fans alike. His videos range from trending dances to laugh at loud skits; but it’s no walk in the park when it comes to creating these viral clips – there is a tremendous amount of hard work that goes into his content.
“It all depends on the video itself and the storyline. Most of my ideas are like a story, where they’re from beginning, middle, to end.” Said James, “It gets a little challenging to have to constantly create new content, and make sure all the frames are shot, because if I miss anything, when I go to edit, the video won’t make sense. It’s a lot of hats I’m wearing where I’m directing, and I’m talent… It’s all in one mindset, but I think over the past couple of years I really got into the flow of understanding how to make it flow organically whenever I shoot.”
When it comes to creating new content, James makes sure his videos have a unique spin to them. His visions for his videos come to him in a variety of ways, and he is constantly thinking about how to raise the bar.
“Sometimes it’s on the spot where we just go with the flow, then a lot of the time it’s thought out ideas, or I could be driving, or at the store and I think of something funny,” Henry said. “Also some ideas come from moments in my life that I’ve been through that I find comical. The best thing that I try to do in my videos is to make sure that whatever funny aspect I found humorous about whatever moment happened, I try to emphasize that so the audience can see why I found that specific thing funny.”
Just like many people, James is a fan of a number of TikTokers, and gets to collaborate with some of the best in the game. He says they always keep him on his feet and continue to inspire him.
“The people that I work with sometimes, I think they are some of the funniest people. They put so much work in their content. For instance, Drea Knowsbest, she’s in most of my stuff, and her humor is kind of like mine too. There are so many creative people on there.”
TikTok isn’t the only thing on the comedian’s mind. James is constantly working on his next big move, which is to transition to the film industry.
“10 years down, I’m really hopeful I’ll be one of the lead characters in film or television. I plan on owning my own production company within the next couple of years, and creating more content, and creating more films and shows.” Henry continued, “I’m getting into the point of my life where I understand more about the film industry. I want to step into that role and to be able to dictate what stories I get to make, and showcase stories that actually matter, and that can teach people more about points of views that aren’t really shown; but in a positive, effective, entertaining way.”
There are a number of stars who have and continue to inspire James throughout his career, and he hopes to one day follow in their footsteps.
“Will Smith, Martin Lawrence. Martin growing up was one of the most influential shows for me, even though it was ahead of my time. To see someone that looked like me, that was so funny, and played different characters on TV was really intriguing… Jamie Foxx who was a trailblazer. He checked off every box of talent. Those are the people I look up to and I’m hopeful I’ll get to work with one day.”
TikTok has become massive over the years, with many now trying to achieve the same success James has found. When it comes to starting out on the social media app, James has some key advice.
“It’s just about the consistency, and regardless of what you post, as long as you like it, that’s what’s most important, and effort shows. Personality is something that always transcends through a video, so be yourself, post yourself, get creative with your ideas. Think outside the box, and try to be more original with your content, and not try to do what’s trending, and if you do what’s trending at least have your own spin to it that showcases you.”
The sky’s the limit for James as he continues to build his brand. Currently he’s in the midst of developing a couple of series, and says a lot more is coming both on and off TikTok. Until then, you can follow James on TikTok @jameshenry.
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Benny Adams is a Producer, entertainment Journalist, and host in Los Angeles. He studied broadcast journalism at California State University Northridge.
Founded by Emmy winning journalist Maria Menounos and Producer Keven Undergaro, artist-friendly AfterBuzz TV is the world’s largest digital broadcast network and pop culture news platform, producing post-game ‘after-shows’ for nearly all favorite TV shows, interviewing cast and showrunners and providing the widest video, audio and article coverage of shows, content and influencers than any entertainment news platforms in existence
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