Skip To Content

    27 Things That Happened During The Summer Of 1999 That’ll Make You Say, “OMG, Can’t Believe All That Happened 20 Years Ago”

    It was the summer that gave us more Harry Potter and a brand-new Star Wars movie!

    1. SpongeBob SquarePants made its debut on Nickelodeon — and it also aired its iconic "Pizza Delivery" episode that August.


    2. Britney Spears continued to stir controversy for being "too sexy" (which was fallout from her iconic Rolling Stone cover).

    Rolling Stone

    3. Disney released Tarzan into theaters, the film would mark the end of the Disney Renaissance.


    4. Lisa Kudrow hosted the 1999 MTV Movie Awards.

    Frank Micelotta Archive / Getty Images

    5. And one of the highlights of the award show was Will Smith performing "Wild Wild West," with a surprise appearance by Stevie Wonder.

    View this video on YouTube

    6. Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace toys were the hottest toys around and had collectors everywhere snatching them up.

    Matt Campbell / AFP / Getty Images, Hector Mata / AFP / Getty Images

    7. MTV began airing its eighth season of The Real World, this time set in Hawaii.


    8. The second season of Sex and the City premiered on HBO.


    9. Doug and The Nanny both ended their runs.

    Viacom, CBS

    10. The Sixth Sense was an absolute sensation, and since there was no Twitter, not too many people had the ending ruined.


    11. The Blair Witch Project scared audiences and had many people thinking it was real. It also became one of the most profitable films of all-time.

    Artisan Entertainment

    12. Apple released its iBook and everybody wanted one.

    Ted Thai / The LIFE Picture Collection via

    13. Dial-up internet was still very much the norm. Also, not even half of the U.S. had internet access in their homes at the time.


    14. Napster launched and forever changed the music industry.


    15. George W. Bush, then-Governor of Texas, announced he was planning on running for president of the United States.

    New York Daily News Archive / Getty Images

    16. John F. Kennedy Jr., his wife Carolyn, and his sister-in-law Lauren Bessette died in a plane crash off the coast of Martha's Vineyard.

    17. Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? premiered on ABC and became an instant hit.

    Getty Images

    18. Angelina Jolie (who was at the time an up-and-coming actor) graced the cover of Rolling Stone's annual "Hot List" issue.

    Rolling Stone

    19. American Pie was an unexpected hit and would go on to bring back teen sex comedies.


    20. Lit's "My Own Worst Enemy" and Red Hot Chili Peppers' "Scar Tissue" dominated alt-radio.

    RCA, WMG

    21. Backstreet Boy's "I Want it that Way" was the biggest video on TRL — although it faced fierce competition from the video for NSYNC's "I Drive Myself Crazy."

    Sony Music

    22. Christina Aguilera released her debut single, "Genie In A Bottle." It would also go on to become the song of the summer.

    Sony Music

    23. Other big songs of the summer were Destiny's Child's "Bills, Bills, Bills" and Jennifer Lopez's debut single, "If You Had My Love."

    Sony Music

    24. Renee Russo started a huge trend when women started copying the hairstyle she had in The Thomas Crown Affair.

    United Artists

    25. Tony Hawk's Pro Skater was released and became one of the biggest selling games of the year.


    26. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban was published in the UK.


    27. And finally, Star Wars: Episode I — The Phantom Menace was released into theaters. It would go on to become the biggest movie of the year.


    Nostalgia Trip

    Take a trip down memory lane that’ll make you feel nostalgia AF

    Newsletter signup form