Netflix’s Dancing For The Devil: Inside the 7M TikTok Cult

by | Jun 11, 2024 | Influencer News

Have you heard about Netflix’s Dancing for the Devil: The 7M TikTok Cult docuseries that’s breaking the internet?

#dancingforthedevil currently has over 520 Instagram posts, and some videos on TikTok have already received over 2.2M views. 🤯

This harrowing tale is a stark reminder that influencers have real power over people. As influencer marketing managers we must learn to use that power responsibly.

Grab a cup of coffee, sit back, and let’s dive into the controversial world of 7M Films and its founder, Robert Shinn, as revealed in the Netflix documentary series, Dancing for the Devil: The 7M TikTok Cult.

Ready? Let’s roll. 👇

The dream of TikTok stardom

We all know the hustle: creating viral content, gaining followers, and turning those likes and shares into a sustainable career. 

It’s the holy grail for every content creator out there. 

But maintaining that momentum? That’s the tricky part. 

Enter management companies. They’re supposed to be our guiding lights, helping us plan our posts and secure those coveted publicity opportunities. 

But as the documentary series Dancing for the Devil shows, not all management companies play fair.

The rise and fall of 7M Films

This Netflix docuseries takes us through the origins of 7M Films, founded by Robert Shinn, who also happens to be a pastor at Shekinah Church.

It’s a wild ride, tracing how Shinn’s small LA-based church grew into a multi-faceted business empire, and eventually, a TikTok management company.

Over three riveting episodes, we hear from former 7M members who claim Shinn created a cult-like environment, manipulating and abusing his followers.

Stories from the inside

Two sets of sisters take centre stage in this narrative: Melanie Wilking and Miranda Derrick (formerly Wilking), and Melanie and Priscylla Lee. 

The Lee sisters’ journey began back in 1999 when they joined Shekinah Church as young immigrants. 

They lived with other church members and became deeply integrated into the community. Melanie Lee eventually escaped, but her sister Priscylla remained, leading to a decade-long separation.

Shinn founded 7M Films in 2021, blurring the lines between his church and his talent management company. 

Melanie Wilking and her family exposed the dark side of 7M during a tearful Instagram Live session in 2022, claiming they hadn’t been in touch with Miranda for years since she joined the company. 

Dancing for the Devil reveals Shinn’s manipulative tactics. 

He used his pastoral influence to control his followers. 

He told them to “die to” themselves and their families, a practice meant to break personal ties and increase their dependency on him. 

This played out dramatically with the Wilking sisters, who were once inseparable until Miranda joined 7M, even marrying without informing her family.

The series also highlights Shinn’s success through 7M, landing his dancers opportunities on high-profile platforms like The Ellen Show and LA Clippers games.

But behind the scenes, former members accuse Shinn of financial exploitation, emotional manipulation, and even sexual abuse. 

Shinn and his organisations, however, did not participate in the documentary and have denied these allegations.

The current state of 7M Films

Today, Shinn has not faced formal criminal charges related to 7M, though the company continues to operate with Miranda and her husband, who are still producing content. 

The legal battles are far from over, with former members accusing Shinn of forced labour, human trafficking, and more.

A defamation and trade libel suit against former church members is also in play, with a trial expected in July 2025.

My final thoughts

So, what does this mean for us in the influencer marketing world?

It’s a stark reminder of the power dynamics at play. Management companies can propel us to stardom, but they can also exploit our dreams and vulnerabilities. 

It’s crucial to choose our partners wisely and ensure they genuinely have our best interests at heart.

Dancing for the Devil serves as a cautionary tale about the potential dark side of influencer management. 

It underscores the need for transparency, ethical practices, and maintaining personal integrity in our industry. 

Let’s remember to support each other and advocate for a community where trust and respect reign supreme.


Join our 3K Followers





Influencer Marketing Articles

Actionable tips to get more success with influencer marketing campaigns

Try our Influencer Marketing Platform for free

Enjoy free searches & analyses create your first list