“Toxic” is the hit 2004 song from iconic American singer and songwriter Britney Spears. It is the sixth song from Spears’ fourth album “In The Zone”, which was released through Jive records.
The dance-pop/techno-pop was written with Janet Jackson in mind, but was originally offered to Kylie Minogue who turned it down, leading to Spears’ landing the track. It tells a tale of a scorned lover attempting to get back at a dangerous ex-partner who is compared to an addictive and dangerous drug. The song has been a classic since its release in 2003 and a global favourite.
The music video was directed by infamous video director Joseph Khan and was filmed on a soundstage in Los Angeles. Khan had previously worked with Spears on her 2000 single “Stronger”. Spears first approached Kahn with a full blown story sketch detailing a secret agent who was seeking revenge against a former lover. Her concept was extremely detailed – down to a scene which made it into the music video where Spears is a flight attendant and pours a drink onto a passengers lap who she then seduces in the airplane bathroom. The total cost of the music video was $1 million. Uploaded to Spears’ YouTube channel on the 25th October 2009, the video had a total of 560.4 million views with 3.6 million likes as of 16th May 2022.
“Toxic” has won a grand total of 16 awards:
- “Most Performed Songs” at the 2005 ASCAP Pop Music Awards
- “50,000 Spins”, “100,000 Spins” & “200,000 Spins” at the 2004 BDS Certified Awards
- “International Songs of the Year” at the 2005 Gaygalan Awards
- “Best Dance Recording” at the 2005 Grammy Awards
- “Video of the Year” at the 2004 GV Music & Fashion Awards
- “PRS Most Performed Work” at the 2004 Ivor Novello Award
- “Most Essential Songs”, “Best Song” &”Best Video” at the 2004 Now! Awards
- “Best Song of the Decades 2000s” at the 2018 Now! Awards
- “Favourite Ringtone” at the 2004 Smash Hits Poll Winners Party
- “Choice Single” at the 2004 Teen Choice Awards
- “Videos with over 100 million views on Vevo’ at the 2014 Vevo Certified Awards
- “Outstanding Visual Effects in a Music Video” at the 2005 Visual Effects Society
“Toxic” is also certified:
- Gold in France, Japan, New Zealand, Sweden & the US
- Platinum in Australia, Denmark, Italy & Norway
- 2x Platinum in UK
Read the lyrics to “Toxic” here.
*All chart rankings accurate at the time of publishing.