×

A-ha’s ‘Take on Me’ Tops 1 Billion YouTube Views, Second ’80s Video to Hit Milestone

Norwegian synthpop trio A-ha’s “Take On Me” has joined YouTube’s billion-views club.

The iconic video from A-ha, which combines live action with pencil-sketch animation, is only the second song from the 1980s to reach the elite YouTube milestone, after Guns N’ Roses’ “Sweet Child O’ Mine” crested the one-billion-views mark last fall (and currently has 1.05 billion). The “Take On Me” video is averaging over 480,000 daily views so far in 2020, according to YouTube.

The A-ha music video for “Take On Me,” directed by Steve Barron and first released in 1985, won six awards at the 1986 MTV Video Music Awards, including for directing and best new artist in a video. It also was nominated for favorite pop/rock video at the 13th American Music Awards in 1986. More recently, “Take on Me” was sampled in Pitbull’s 2013 dance hit “Feel This Moment” featuring Christina Aguilera. On YouTube, it’s available in 4K format in a remastered version.

In a tweet celebrating the milestone, A-ha said on Twitter, “We couldn’t have done this without you, our fans.” The group also announced a new merchandise collection timed for the video reaching 1 billion views, including a T-shirt designed by Michael Patterson and Candace Reckinger (the “Take On Me’s” video animators and designers), a 12-by-12-inch art print, and a VHS tape of the official music video.

Other ’80s hits that have racked up hundreds of millions of views to date include Cyndi Lauper’s “Girls Just Want To Have Fun” (currently with 808 million views); Michael Jackson’s “Billie Jean” (746 million); and The Police’s “Every Breath You Take” (738 million).

Meanwhile, also this week, Eminem’s 2013 release “Rap God” surpassed 1 billion views, joining the rapper’s videos for “Not Afraid” (1.3 billion views) and “Love the Way You Lie” (1.9 billion views). Eminem is currently No. 3 on the U.S. top artists chart and No. 15 on the global top artists chart.

More Digital

  • U.K. Freelancers

    U.K. Government Faces Pressure From Industry on Economic Measures for Freelancers

    The U.K. government is facing increasing pressure from the creative industries after it emerged that economic measures set out for the self-employed last week by Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak have yawning gaps in them. The measures may have come as a welcome move for many creative industries workers, but not all are eligible [...]

  • Howard Stern'America's Got Talent' Post-Show, New

    Howard Stern Announces SiriusXM Premier Will Be Free Through May 15

    Howard Stern announced Tuesday that SiriusXM Premier will be free through May 15 as a courtesy to those staying home in an effort to stop the spread of coronavirus. For the next month and a half, listeners will have access to more than 300 ad-free channels, including the Howard Stern Show. Sirius XM is also [...]

  • Lenny Abrahamson Series 'Normal People' Sets

    Oscar Nominee Lenny Abrahamson's 'Normal People' Sets BBC, Hulu Dates

    “Normal People,” a BBC and Hulu 12-part drama, will bow as a boxset on BBC Three in the U.K. on April 26, and will be released in the U.S. on April 29, it was revealed Tuesday. It will also air on BBC One, and RTE in Ireland, dates for which are yet to be confirmed. [...]

  • NewFronts 2020

    NewFronts 2020 Digital Marketing Series Postponed to June

    The 2020 Digital Content NewFronts are moving about two months later as live-streamed virtual presentations, with organizers citing the need for more time for participants to prep. Previously, the annual NewFronts had been scheduled for April 27-May 6 at various venues in New York City — but with the COVID-19 pandemic it became clear earlier [...]

  • Andrew Yang

    Andrew Yang Sets Launch of Issues-Oriented Podcast 'Yang Speaks' (EXCLUSIVE)

    Andrew Yang bowed out of the U.S. presidential race, but the businessman-turned-politico wants to keep his policy agenda on the national media stage. Less than two months after ending his 2020 presidential campaign, he’s set plans to launch a new podcast, “Yang Speaks,” in partnership with podcast studio and network Cadence13, Variety has learned. The [...]

  • Roku Spanish Voice OS 3.9

    Hablemos! Roku to Add Spanish-Language Voice Support to Streaming Devices

    Roku users — finalmente — will soon be able to use voice controls and conduct searches in Spanish on the streaming-media platform. With the Spanish-language support, Roku customers in the U.S. and Mexico will be able to speak commands en español into their remotes and other voice-enabled Roku devices to launch channels; search for titles, [...]

  • Disney Plus

    New Date Set for Disney Plus Hotstar Launch in India

    The slightly delayed India launch of streaming platform Disney Plus Hotstar is now set for Friday. The service will be available in two price tiers. Disney Plus VIP subscribers get access to the entire Marvel Cinematic Universe, Bollywood films, Hotstar originals, unlimited live sports and Star TV serials for INR 399 ($5.30) a year. For [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content