Mom Who Put on Star Wars Mask Speaks About Newfound Internet Fame: 'I Am the Happiest Emoting Chewbacca'
A Texas mom has combined her contagious laughter with her love of the Star Wars franchise to become an instant viral video star.
While shopping at Kohl’s, Candace Payne treated herself to a toy – but not just any toy – a Chewbacca mask that makes the growl like the famous wookiee in the Star Wars films.
Payne, a mother of two, was so ecstatic about her purchase that she went live on Facebook directly from the Kohl’s parking lot to share her news.
Her video, entitled, “It’s the simple joys in life…” has raked in more than 55 million views since being posted Thursday afternoon.
She got the mask on clearance at the store and was so excited about what it could do. "I am a stay-at-home mom. I didn't have anyone to rejoice in this," she told InsideEdition.com when asked why she went live on Facebook with her purchase.
She added: "I am the happiest emoting Chewbacca. I thought I would just share it with my friends, other stay at home moms, friends on Facebook," she added. "When I saw the Chewbacca mask with such joy, I had to share it."
Payne had no idea the video would reach the lengths it has.
"I saw the views climb, then the messages started, the calls, I thought 'Jesus, take the wheel,'" she told InsideEdition.com of the overwhelming response it has gotten.
She played with the mask as her camera rolled and could not stop laughing and smiling as it made the famous growl of Han Solo’s sidekick.
“I am such a happy Chewbacca,” she screamed in the video. “This is worth every penny!”
In the video, Payne laughed so hard she made herself cry and declared: “This is the best birthday gift ever to myself!”
Payne, who was wearing a Death Star t-shirt in her video, has a tremendous love of the film franchise. Her admiration for the films is all thanks to her husband and in-laws.
"I wasn't a Star Wars fan until I got married 15 years ago," she admitted. Her husband and his family introduced her to the movies and she was instantly hooked.
Now, the Payne family has become a Star Wars household.
They were all Star Wars characters for Halloween and even went to a special theater with reclining seats to see the latest installment, The Force Awakens, opening weekend in December.
"We love Star Wars for all of the merchandising," she told InsideEdition.com.
As her video brings joy to anyone who has clicked on it. One fan in particular was Chewbacca himself, actor Peter Mayhew, who commented about the video on Reddit: "Absolutely Wonderful!"
Even the franchise has found out about her video, sharing it on Twitter.