Rising Star: YouTuber peaks ultimate success after 10 years

Victoria Hernandez, Rising Star columnist

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PewDiePie is a Swedish gaming YouTuber named Felix Kjellberg, who has garnered over 101 million subscribers and 23,453,772,001 views over the course of nearly 10 years.

The video that introduced me to PewDiePie was the 2012 upload from the FineBros ’TEEN REACT TO PEWDIEPIE’ episode which was in 2012. At the time, he only had acquired 1.5 million subscribers. 

While he was attending college, majoring in industrial engineering and management, he found YouTube and soon realized his true passion was making videos on the internet.

“At that time I was 20 years old, I was living in Sweden, in a small flat, I had just moved away from home, I had no idea what I was doing, I just knew I enjoyed it. At the time [I was] studying industrial economics and management, my true calling in life. I decided this YouTube hobby, I’ll probably have to set aside because I should probably focus on my finals. So I uploaded a video saying I was going on a break but in reality that I was quitting, this was it for me. Which was a pretty reasonable choice to make considering I had about five people that actually watched me during this time but luckily the break didn’t last long. A few days later I was back uploading videos again. I had found what I was actually passionate about and I wasn’t ready to just let it go. I knew a career in YouTube was so far away it was more of a myth than a dream at this point because people didn’t even know if it was possible. But it was always at the back of my mind that there was this tiny chance that this could actually happen,” Kjellberg said in his ‘Unboxing 100 MIL YouTube AWARD!!

I made a lot of mistakes on the way but I’ve grown, I feel like I have least.”

— Felix Kjellberg

Kjellberg has been through all the phases of YouTube. He has made gaming videos, commentary videos, and made ‘music’ on YouTube. Now he feels like he can make whatever videos and his ‘9-year-old’ army will still watch it, like his Minecraft playthrough. 

Kjellberg explained the success of his Minecraft series and how it has affected his channel in his August video ‘Adressing the Rumors…’.

“When you make YouTube videos or at least gaming videos and frequently at that, sometimes you hit certain things that maybe get really popular but maybe you don’t enjoy making it yourself. Or maybe some things that you really enjoy recording doesn’t get really popular for whatever reason or maybe people don’t like it, because it doesn’t translate as well into video format. You have all these different things you want to hit as a YouTuber and sometimes you hit one or two of them, but with Minecraft, it’s just been everything. And it’s just been all positive. The channel is getting more views than [it] has ever gotten. Everyone seemed really happy and positive about it. I absolutely loved recording it. And ad revenue is absolutely fantastic. Like it could not be better. I feel like I’m finally earning what people think I’m making out of YouTube videos.” 

Since he lives in the U.K., on the night of August 24 (central time), PewDiePie finally reached 100 million subscribers, the time difference causing him to be asleep. PewDiePie is the first YouTuber to reach 100 million subscribers, not unlike YouTube channels that have done before him. For his subscribers and fellow YouTubers, it shows how far you can get on the platform and be able to follow your passions. 

In his video, Unboxing 100 MIL YouTube AWARD!!, he explained his journey as a creator and helped him change as a person.

I would have never imagined this outcome, beyond my wildest dreams came true, ten times over, a hundred times over.”

— Felix Kjellberg

“I used to be an introvert but YouTube really helped me open up because on the other side there was people that really appreciated the side of me that I didn’t show to anyone. At this point I had completely failed school, I’m sorry Mom and Dad. My passion was somewhere else and I famously began selling hot dogs to sustain myself but I look back at this time with great memories because I was finally pursuing my goals, my dream. Not selling hot dogs, but making videos in my spare time that is. At this time I managed to meet a girl, who later became my wife. I won’t bore you with every step of the way of the journey. It’s been long, it had its ups and downs. I made a lot of mistakes on the way but I’ve grown, I feel like I have least. And I feel like I finally come in terms with the responsibility I have as a creator, about 100 million subscribers too late but you know. But the channel has done a lot of good too. A lot of things that I’m truly proud of. We literally raised millions of dollars to charities and I’m really proud of my audience for helping me to that. Looking back at myself in that flat in Sweden, it’s a very surreal experience. I would have never imagined this outcome, beyond my wildest dreams came true, ten times over, a hundred times over. I’m twenty-nine years old now, I’m still [so] awkward but I finally got confidence in myself and I’m really proud of who I am today. And instead of a hundred subs, we hit a hundred million subs.”

At the beginning of his YouTube career, Felix found the love of his life, Marzia Bisognin. Felix and Marzia met through his YouTube videos and soon began their 8-year long relationship. On April 17, 2018,  Felix proposed to Marzia during a trip to Japan and the internet absolutely lost it. They officially wed on August 19 of this year, on their 8th year anniversary. Their wedding video has been viewed over 24 million times.

Felix expressed his enjoyment of his wedding day in his ‘Minecraft in Minecraft Epicly – Part 29’ video. “It was such an amazing day, it was the best day of my life and I know it’s so cliche to say that. Whenever I heard other people say it, I’m like that’s cringe. It was such an amazing day, my family was there, Marzia’s family was there, my close friends were there. Everyone [was] in such a good mood, everyone was just happy. Marzia was so beautiful, we’ve been planning it for over a year and it was so much stress to plan a wedding. I just wish I knew that it would turn out so amazing because then I wouldn’t have worried about a single thing because it could have not gone any more perfect and I’m just so happy. Tears me up just thinking about it, I’m so happy.” 

Kjellberg has gotten married to the love of his life, reached 100 million subscribers, beat the Ender Dragon (in Minecraft), and reached 2 million members on his ‘PewdiepieSubmissions’ subreddit in Reddit; all in the same week. In his video called ‘Best Week Ever.’, he expressed his delight over the milestones, “I’m so happy, everything is happening at once. Perfect timing, good job guys.”

PewDiePie’s story can be seen as an inspiration. Felix has now found joy in a new chapter of his life; a beautiful marriage, unfathomed success, and true happiness.