10 Viral Video Stars Whose Lives Weren't Ruined by the Internet


Getting your video to go viral is often a mixed blessing. For some, like the Star Wars Kid or Winnebago Man, it’s unwanted. But for others it’s as good as winning the lottery.

Although Chris Crocker’s “Leave Britney Alone!” rant became the target of ridicule and parody, Chris started showing up on the covers of magazines and on television shows explaining himself. Perhaps people don’t want to see him crying for the rest of his life, but there has been enough interest in him for rumors to circulate about a reality TV show. His love for Britney has turned into an on-again off-again recording career with two singles: “Mind in the Gutter” and “Love You Better.”

Gary Brolsma, of Numa Numa fame, has turned his goofy dance into a career. Initially frustrated with his newfound fame, talks with his lawyers and parents forced him to embrace his internet celebrity since he had shot and uploaded the video himself. He has appeared in music videos for Barenaked Ladies and Weezer as well as advertisements for Geico and Vizio.

Ok Go is quite possibly the only band more famous for their music videos than for their music. The video for their hit, “Here It Goes Again,” helped the band sell enough records to start their own record label, Paracadute Recordings.

Noah Kalina uploaded a six-year time-lapse of his face at the age of 19, taking one picture every single day. His internet fame helped further his photography career and introduced his works into museums like The Musée de l’Elysée.

Paris Hilton’s sex tape with ex- boyfriend Rick Salomon introduced a young heiress to the world and transformed her from famous-for-being-famous to famous-for-having-a-sex-tape. Her newfound notoriety increased interest in her television show, The Simple Life, which lasted for five seasons. She continues to star in movies and reality television shows as well as design clothes and model.

Justin Bieber’s mom started posting films of him performing covers of classic R&B songs when he was just 12. At the age of 13, Bieber was signed to Island Records. Just this year he was the first white person nominated for a BET Award and Bieber Fever is yet to show signs of slowing down.

Miss Teen South Carolina Lauren Caitlin Upton stumbled over her own words so much that she made Joe Biden look responsible. Regardless, the clip’s popularity, her beauty and southern charm only furthered her modeling career and landed her on television shows like Jimmy Kimmel Live and in Weezer’s “Pork And Beans” music video.

“Edgar’s Fall” landed Edgar, among many things, a cookie commercial where the wrongs in the original video are righted by a phalanx of Roman warriors. The unofficial cookie champion of Mexico was embraced to such an extent that appearances on TV and radio could not prevent the internet from suggesting a campaign for presidency. Isn’t cookie champion enough?

Lauren Bernat was surreptitiously videotaped hula-hooping via Wii Fit by her boyfriend and he uploaded the video to YouTube. Initially horrified, she demanded he remove the video (which he had titled “Why every guy should buy their girlfriend Wii Fit”), but even he could not stop what he had set in motion and she has since embraced her internet celebrity. She appears in Wii commercials and has been on the Tyra Banks show.

David “Elsewhere” Bernal’s dance video showcasing some of his signature moves helped David become a professional dancer. Since the video gained popularity, he’s done advertisements for 7-Eleven, Puma and Apple (to name just a few) and has appeared in movies and on TV shows.

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