For the first time in almost five years, there’s a new video at the top of the YouTube ladder. The music video for the Wiz Khalifa song “See You Again,” which features singer Charlie Puth, has surpassed Psy’s “Gangnam Style” to become the most-viewed YouTube video of all time.
“See You Again,” which was written as an original song for the blockbuster Furious 7, pays tribute to Paul Walker, who starred in almost all of the Fast and the Furious movies but passed away before the release of the franchise’s seventh installment. More than two years after the “See You Again” video first arrived on YouTube, its comment section still serves as a de facto memorial to Walker, with fans offering tributes to the actor.
After arriving on YouTube on April 6, 2015, “See You Again” rose quickly, bolstered by its status as a Billboard chart topper. It became the tenth video to reach one billion views in October 2015, and rose to two billion 11 months after that. Currently, it counts close to 2.9 billion views, making it a strong candidate to become the first YouTube clip to cross the three billion view mark.
The ascension of “See You Again” ends a remarkable run for “Gangnam Style.” Psy’s music video, which became a viral sensation after its release in July 2012, broke numerous records after earning YouTube’s “all-time most-viewed” title in November 2012. It was the first video to achieve both one billion and two billion views, and it spent more time as YouTube’s number one video than any other, holding that position for 1,689 days.
It seems unlikely that “See You Again” will have nearly as long a turn as the king of the YouTube hill. The official video for Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yankee’s “Despacito,” bolstered by a remix released by Justin Bieber, has received more than 2.4 billion views since January 2017, meaning it is on pace to cruise past “See You Again” at some point over the next few months. For now, however, Khalifa and Puth are on top of the YouTube world, and their hit music video has plenty of momentum of its own.