We’ve heard many stories about cults – either religious, political, or commercial. But have you ever heard about a cult fronted as a group of TikTok dancers? Wild, right? But, it exists. Netflix’s docuseriesDancing With The Devil: The 7M TikTok Cult,” unveils the shocking world of TikTok dancers signed to 7M Films

The three-episode series focuses on the talent management agency, Shekinah Church, Robert Shinn, and the TikTokers including Miranda Wilking (now Derrick). Dancing for the Devil centres on Miranda, a dancer and content creator who had a popular TikTok channel with her sister, Melanie called the Wilking Sisters. The siblings accumulated millions of followers and lucrative brand deals through their popular dancing videos.

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What Transpired

Miranda started growing distant from her family after being introduced to her boyfriend, now-husband James Derrick (BDash). She then signed with Los Angeles-based 7M Films, a talent management agency owned by Robert Shinn who is a pastor at the Shekinah Church.

Over two years ago, Miranda’s parents made a 40-minute-long public plea on Instagram Live. In the video, her sister Melanie Wilking and her parents claimed they had lost all contact with the 25-year-old. They further mentioned that she was “no longer in control” of her life after being part of that “religious organization.”

Melanie and Miranda had performed together as the Wilking Sisters, but later Miranda disappeared from the family’s lives. However, she was still living in the public eye including announcing her marriage to fellow dancer James Derrick (known as BDash). She also walked the red carpet at the American Music Awards in November 2021 and appeared on The Ellen DeGeneres Show.

Miranda Derrick’s millions of followers also did not notice anything amiss, based on her social media accounts. The Los Angeles-based dancer was regularly posting feel-good, polished videos of modern choreography with her husband BDash and a small-knit group of fellow dancers and creators.

Similar Story, Different Family

Dancing for the Devil” parallelly follows the stories of two pairs of sisters who were allegedly separated by Shinn’s organizations: Wilking and Derrick, and Melanie and Priscylla Lee. The latter two joined Shekinah as young immigrants in 1999 and became dependent on it for housing and work. They lost contact for years when Melanie left the church with the help of a friend but Priscylla stayed. Over the course of the production of Netflix’s series, Priscylla left Shekinah Church as well, and shared her story.

When The Truth Came To Light

In the last few years, reports from multiple publications, an ongoing lawsuit, and now, a Netflix docuseries, have revealed troubling claims about the mysterious religious organization run by Robert Shinn. The Wilkings alleged how it doubles as a talent management company called 7M Films where dancers and financially, mentally, and physically abused.

The docuseries “Dancing for the Devil: The 7M TikTok Cult,” features the Wilking family along with a handful of dancers formerly represented by 7M Films. They are in civil litigation with its co-owner and CEO, Robert Shinn to speak up about their experiences. The dancers include Kevin “Konkrete” Davis, Aubrey Fisher and Kylie Douglas.

Davis, Fisher and Douglas collaborated with the Derricks regularly on dance videos during their time with 7M and amassed millions of combined followers across TikTok and Instagram. Dancing for the Devil shows the family’s side of the story – what it was like losing their daughter and their desperate attempts to re-establish contact with her. The series also features testimonies of other dancers who have since left 7M Films and are now trying to get justice against Shinn.

The God-Man & His Business

Robert Shinn, an LA pastor and his son Isaiah Shinn founded 7M Films alongside his long-running Shekinah Church. “Dancing for the Devil” reveals that the two entities are the same. It further claims that Shinn and his wife, Hannah, make money off their church members and talent while isolating them from their previous lives. In 2022, 7M Films made a public statement asserting that it “operate(d) separately and apart” from Shekinah Church.

According to the series, Robert Shinn first began Shekinah as a religious community for Korean Americans. Then they founded 7M as an off-shoot business for Internet-famous dancers, promising them business deals, fame and wealth in addition to religious salvation.

First-hand accounts and recordings of Shinn’s sermons detail how he asked members to “die to” their families, or cut them off, to save their loved ones in the afterlife. Melanie Wilking, too, had attended dinners hosted by Shinn along with her sister, but, sensing red flags, she declined to go to his invite-only church services.

The Cross-Complaints

According to CNN, Shinn filed a lawsuit in 2022 claiming defamation and trade libel against several former church members, including the Lee sisters. He alleged the defendants made “false statements” by calling his organization a cult and launching a campaign to “cancel” Shinn “through flagrant, defamatory attacks on social and other media.”

In 2023, Davis, Fisher, Douglas, and others joined a cross-complaint with the former church members against Shinn, his wife, their entities and other affiliated individuals. “The claims accuse them of fraud, forced labor and human trafficking, as well as Robert of sexual battery. The case is scheduled to go to trial in July 2025 in Los Angeles; to date, no criminal charges have been filed,” read the CNN report. However, no criminal charges have been filed against Shinn yet, and the company continues to operate.

Dancing with the Devil Netflix docuseries tiktok dancers cult Robert Shinn Shekinah Church Miranda Wilking

Present Day

Miranda Derrick is still a member of 7M Films and frequently posts dancing videos on social media. She and her family speak to each other occasionally now, under the condition that they aren’t allowed to ask or talk about 7M or the Shekinah Church.

Miranda has posted several pictures with her family on Instagram, including a recent photo at Melanie’s wedding, a video with her mom for Mother’s Day in 2024, and another video dancing with her mom and sister in April. however, the docuseries alleges that these posts are mainly for show and that Miranda is still close to Shinn.

Meanwhile, Melanie called her interactions with Miranda “superficial” and said they were orchestrated for her sister’s social media presence. “I am not held against my will and I’ve never been a hostage,” Miranda said in a public statement about the allegations that she is in a cult. 

Gets You Thinking

Being a TikTok celebrity has exciting benefits: Viral videos can make you famous, and the brand deals that follow can make you rich. For many up-and-coming dancers, figuring out a successful social media business strategy can be daunting. In that sense, having management backing your every career move can be game-changing. But what when it turns out to be a cult?

Dancing With The Devil” gave rise to many theories about 7M Films and Shekinah Church that have been floating around. Have you watched it yet?