Bottom Line: One of the Internet’s oldest memes, Star Wars Kid is also a prime example of how leaked footage, Kazaa and bad luck can transform into an Internet sensation.
On November 4, 2002 the student made a video of himself swinging a golf ball retriever around as a weapon. The video was filmed at his high school studio, and the tape left in a basement. Inadvertently, he taped it over a portion of a basketball game (as seen extremely briefly at the end of the clip). The original owner of the videotape discovered it and immediately shared it with friends. Thinking that it would be a funny prank, one of them encoded it to a WMV file and published it over the Kazaa peer-to-peer file sharing network. It was also hosted on a personal website. Within two weeks, the file had been downloaded several million times. An adapted version of the video was created, adding Star Wars music, texts, and lightsaber lights and sounds to his golf ball retriever. As of November 27, 2006 it was estimated by The Viral Factory that the videos had been viewed over 900 million times, making it the most popular “viral video” on the Internet.
An overweight Star Wars fan from Quebec. He taped himself pretending to fight a lightsaber battle (every time I try to see it I’m redirected grrr) which is supposed to be so bad it’s funny. Some of his “friends” uploaded the video to the net. Soon 5 million people saw him. Oh dear.
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