If you thought 2013 closed the book on “Gangnam Style” forever, you were sadly mistaken. The song has taken the world by storm with record views and downloads on YouTube and iTunes, as Psy, the video's star, made myriad appearances on shows, commercials and parodies. Now he's on to the biggest television event of the year — the Super Bowl. The Korean pop star will appear in Wonderful Pistachios’ first Super Bowl commercial, donning his signature green suit to match the pistachio color.
South Korean rapper PSY performs 'Gangnam Style' live on NBC's 'Today' show in New York on Sept. 14, 2012.
"The Wonderful Pistachios brand is fun, just like me," said Psy in a Wonderful Pistachios’ press release Tuesday. "Also, I love pistachios, and I look good in green."
This will be the first commercial shown in the United States featuring Psy, whose real name is Park Jae-Sang. It was filmed Tuesday in North Hollywood by Grammy-award winning director Mathew Cullen, according to USA Today.
The company’s “Get Crackin” ad running during Super Bowl XLVII on Feb. 3 will feature Psy showing a special way to crack open those nuts. Its executives are looking forward to the attention the viral sensation will draw to its brand.
"The Super Bowl is the most widely watched sporting event of the year, 'Gangnam Style' is the most-watched YouTube video, and Wonderful Pistachios is the top-selling snack nut item on the market," said Marc Seguin, Paramount Farms vice president of marketing, in a statement Tuesday. "It's a powerhouse combination."
Psy told USA Today that the 30-second commercial will include new lyrics for "Gangnam Style." The ad will continue airing on TV, YouTube and the brand's website after the Super Bowl. Fans will also be able to upload a photo of how they “Get Crackin’ Gangnam Style” for a chance to win a 12-month lease of a 2013 Mercedes Benz SLK 250 — the same model that Psy drives. Details are available on Wonderful Pistachios’ Facebook page.
Psy’s earnings have been estimated to total more than $10 million from YouTube ads and music downloads, alone. The catchy song, which mocks the upper-class culture of the Gangnam neighborhood in Seoul, set a record of 1.1 billion views on YouTube in December, eclipsing Justin Bieber. He is expected to make even more money from commercial appearances, such as those for Samsung and LG in Korea, as well as the upcoming Super Bowl XLVII ad. His family and his agent YG Entertainment (122870.KQ) are cashing in on Psy’s success, as reported late last year.
But will the cultural phenomenon last forever? Or will it die off like the Macarena did in the ‘90s?
Psy told MTV that his performance of the song on "Dick Clark's New Year’s Rockin' Eve” show may be his last. "Being in Times Square on New Year's Eve is already special — it's the biggest stage in the universe — plus it's my birthday, so, with all that, it may be the ending of 'Gangnam Style,'" said Psy. "I mean, what better way to do it? It's my biggest and most meaningful birthday."
But clearly “Gangnam Style” is not over yet. Aside from the new commercial spot, Psy also recently appeared in the season premiere of Betty White’s “Off Their Rockers” on Tuesday.
In the meantime, Psy says he is currently working on a new single.