- By Darren Thompson
IDAHO FALLS, Idaho — In an interview with Native News Online, viral social media star Nathan Apodaca, known on TikTok as “420doggface208,” discussed Columbus Day, quoted one of his favorite scenes from the award-winning film “Smoke Signals,” voting, and so much more.
He shared some of his views on what’s going on in today’s society and expressed that he doesn’t acknowledge or celebrate Columbus Day.
“We are forced to take on the view of what they’re teaching us in school and encouraged to praise and celebrate him,” Apodaca said. “I don’t celebrate Columbus Day.”
Nathan Apodaca (Northern Arapaho and Mexican) is from the Wind River Indian Reservation in Wyoming and currently lives in Idaho Falls, Idaho. Before his viral TikTok video, he was living in a trailer with no running water or electricity.
“I’m trying to figure out what's going on from getting my merchandise going to situating my family in a house,” Nathan Apodaca told Native News Online. “I’m trying to start life, basically.”
The viral TikTok video of him longboarding down a highway exit drinking Ocean Spray Cran-Raspberry juice straight from the bottle while lip-syncing Fleetwood Mac’s “Dreams” happened on a whim — after his car broke down on his way to work at a nearby potato factory and took only one try.
Seven hours later his video had more than a million views.
His video has inspired millions throughout the world and has celebrities as well as TikTok users recreating their own version of what has been coined the #DreamsChallenge on all social media platforms.
Not only did his video inspire Mick Fleetwood of Fleetwood Mac to join TikTok just to share a video of himself sipping some Ocean Spray while vibing to “Dreams,” it sent Fleetwood Mac to the top of many music charts throughout the world including iTunes, Spotify and others after more than 40 years.
"@420doggface208 had it right," Fleetwood wrote to the Today Show. "Dreams and Cranberry just hits different. #Dreams #CranberryDreams #FleetwoodMac”.
Ocean Spray also gifted him a brand new, cranberry-red truck loaded with enough Cran-Raspberry juice to keep him sipping for a while.
He has even inspired politicians like South Dakota State Sen. Red Dawn Foster (Oglala Lakota and Diné).
“It’s so amazing that we are still here,” Foster said. “We are in the halls of government to taking over social media. I love his vibe and positive message that is being shared with the world.”
The most surprising part of his rise to fame is not only that celebrities are making their own versions of his video, but that they are having fun while doing it.
“Seeing the memes, videos, shares, messages — that’s what’s up,” Apodaca said.
When asked who his favorite American Indian is, quoting a line from the award-winning film “Smoke Signals” directed by Chris Eyre (Cheyenne and Arapaho), Apodaca said, “Nobody, nobody, nobody,” while laughing, but praised his mother’s side of the family, who is Northern Arapaho.
“If you want change, it starts with you,” he said of the importance of voting in the upcoming election on Nov. 3. “If the election is decided by one or two votes, can you ask yourself did you cast your vote?”
Since his video skyrocketed to fame, it’s been a whirlwind, Apodaca said.
“I’ve been interviewed in Mexico, Canada, with BBC and so many other news stations I don’t even remember,” he noted. “Shoutout to my management team, for arranging all of these interviews because it’s been crazy.”
Apodaca is represented by Gitoni Productions, a full-service entertainment company. According to their website, Gitoni produces scripted and non-scripted television, talent casting, talent and artist management, product placement, marketing and social media endorsements and has clients on national television daily.
“It’s going to be a long ride,” said Gitoni Productions in an email to Native News Online. “Everyone is behind him. It’s amazing.”
Apodaca is in talks for a variety of endeavors, ranging from television commercials and endorsements to branding other products on his TikTok, which now has more than 2 million followers.
“Everyone just stay steady vibing,” he said.
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