YouTube Let Its Creators Go Wild for Its Rewind 2018 Video

See Portal A's latest epic year-end montage

A hundred YouTube creators, animators, viral stars and celebrities from 25 countries. Seventeen shoot days spread across Rio de Janeiro, Seoul, London, Abu Dhabi, Los Angeles, Chicago and more. A target goal of at least 200 million views. 

Nothing about YouTube's annual Rewind video is small. The end-of-the-year production, created by agency Portal A every year since 2011, has racked up more than 1 billion total views in all. 

On Thursday, the 2018 version dropped, showing the biggest music, trends, memes, celebrities and creators on the YouTube platform globally over the past 12 months. 

Allow Will Smith to kick things off for you... 

As of this writing, about four hours after the video hit YouTube, it already has over 7 million views. Yep, juggernaut. 

While Portal A created the piece, this year the YouTube creators were allowed to decide what should be in Rewind. (As Liza Koshy says early on in the video: "Y'all, we can do WHATEVER WE WANT.") We won't pretend to know half of the characters in the video, but clearly they've done something to earn some year-end love.

"The scale [of Rewind] has grown, but the core principle remains the same—celebrate the amazing creativity on the platform, and remind the world of what an incredible place YouTube has become," Portal A says in a blog post.

"The result is a video that reimagines the biggest memes and trends of the year, but also breaks new ground on what Rewind can be. This year, in addition referencing mega hits like Fortnite, Drake's 'In My Feelings' challenge, and K-Pop sensation BTS, Rewind 2018 pays tribute to groups that form the core of YouTube—from educators on the platform to the LGBTQ community to the powerful women of YouTube." 

For much more on Rewind, including the top trends, creators, artists and videos of the year, check out YouTube's Rewind microsite.

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Tim Nudd
Tim Nudd was editor in chief of the Clio Awards and editor of Muse by Clio from 2018 to 2023.

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