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Camp Pendleton uses content creators as a recruiting tool

The U.S. Marine Corps only entertainment unit is at Camp Pendleton. Since it started using content creators for branding, they've received 50 million views.

OCEANSIDE, Calif. — A unique unit at Camp Pendleton prides itself on showcasing the U.S. Marine Corps in Hollywood as a recruiting tool. 

The entertainment and media liaison office at Camp Pendleton is the only unit in the entire corp.

From the viral video of UFC Paddy Pimblett taking on U.S. Marines to Brandon Williams competing in the U.S. Marine combat fitness test.

The U.S. Marine Corps is tapping content creators as a new branding tool.

“They're living, feeling what it's like to do Marine Corps things, whether that's Marine Corps martial arts, or doing the obstacle course, doing the Combat Fitness Test on camera, or coming out and flying in platforms,” said 1stLt. Jeremy Cerf, U.S.M.C. Entertainment Media Liaison Office.

Ten videos have already generated 50 million views and now creators are sweating to be the next in line.

“They see that they're seeing the things that we're putting out, and they're going, 'Hey, how do I do stuff with the Marine Corps' and it's through our office,” said Cerf.

Cerf is one of three Marines stationed at the only Corps Entertainment Media Liaison Office which happens to be located at Camp Pendleton.

“We're here to make sure that the Marine Corps stories are told right, to support production studios, and to ensure that there's realism,” said Cerf.

They’re also targeting the ever-growing video gaming industry as a recruiting tool.

“We have an obligation to reach out to all those audiences, not just those who watch film, but those who play video games, those that consume media, via social media,” said MSG Wayne Edmiston, U.S.M.C.

While reporting on this story, CBS' Let’s Make a Deal was wrapping up a shoot involving veterans for a primetime special.

Inside the entertainment office is an archive room which is Cerf’s sanctuary.

“Big-time movie nerd. I've seen basically anything, every single military movie out there, like I've consumed it,” said Cerf.

Since the 1940's Camp Pendleton's 125,000 acres have been a backdrop for more than 20 movies and tv shows like CBS’ Seal Team.

The office is like a museum of movie posters. On the walls hang posters from the 1949 World War II film "Sands of Iwo Jima," "Rules of Engagement" and "Iron Man 2" and "Top Gun Maverick."

“We are a hidden gem,” said Cerf.

A unique unit that does the behind-the-scenes consulting, providing, equipment, a backdrop, and Marines as actors all for free to production companies.

“We will burn the midnight old reading a script,” said Cerf.

From movies to YouTube videos, telling the Marine Corps story may be changing but their values remain the same. 

“At the end of the day, our messaging is the same. You know, we have our core values, honor, courage, and commitment,” said Cerf.

The Major for the Entertainment office says they receive about three requests a month to film on base but not all make it to the big screen.

WATCH RELATED: 'Homecoming we deserved' | Honor Flight San Diego's emotional welcome home (Oct. 2022).

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