Within the last year, content subscription platform OnlyFans has risen to economic and cultural prominence as a place for creators of all kinds to release content for their fans. All types of videos are available on the platform, but OnlyFans is most widely known for being the go-to spot for premium adult content. And Hollywood’s resident rebel Bella Thorne is cashing in.
Thorne is a new creator on the London-based platform, but her week-old account has reportedly already earned her over $2 (£1.5) million and was so popular it caused the site to crash. If anyone’s expecting her OnlyFans feed to be especially X-rated, think again; at the moment, Thorne’s subscribers have only accessed somewhat suggestive photos of the 22-year-old actress. The disparity between her content and that of so many others could be attributed to Thorne’s unique purpose for being on the platform to begin with. In conversation with the Los Angeles Times, the actress revealed that OnlyFans has inspired a new film idea exploring the interpersonal and cultural impact of being a sex worker on the internet.
"It’s a feature we are researching as I’m living it currently,” Thorne shared with the outlet. “What are the ins and outs? What does a platform like this do to its users? What’s the connective material between your life and your life inside the world of OnlyFans?"
“How can it change your life for the worse and the better?” she continued. “How far are you willing to go, and how far do you WANT to go? You can be me, or this talented girl from Montana, and OnlyFans could change your life — if you want it to, of course.”
The developing film, which Thorne revealed will be made in partnership with Sean Baker (The Florida Project), is timely in more ways than one. Though OnlyFans was originally created in 2016, the recent rise of the platform over the course of the past year has created more opportunities for sex workers to safely generate a steady stream of income. It changed the often exploitative pornography industry by giving creators the chance to make their own content on their own terms and make a living. Creators keep about 80 percent of what they've earned, and OnlyFans pockets 20%, a small fee for popular users who may be raking in upwards of $100,000 (£76k) each year.
That's why there's such a wide range of content available on the site. Right now, curious subscribers can find anything from the filthiest of sex scenes to ASMR mukbangs. And, as evidenced by Thorne's decision to join the platform, even Hollywood wants in. Many celebrities have started their own OnlyFans pages to share private content with their fans; Blac Chyna is selling foot fetish videos, Love & Hip Hop spouses Safaree Samuels and Erica Mena are bringing their followers into their bedroom, and Real Housewives of New York Sonja Morgan and Dorinda Medley are doing...something (but not that).
Even as she does researches the platform for her Baker project, Thorne told the Los Angeles Times that hopes that her OnlyFans page will be a refuge for fans looking to connect with the actress. What she wants to build on OnlyFans is a community — if that means providing a mix of baking tutorials, writing classes, and twerking videos, so be it.