UPDATE: Beyoncé won the 59th Annual Grammy for best Busic Video for Formation 🏆
This year’s Grammy Awards bring us the best in music from 2016. With over 80 categories, there are so many opportunities for your favorite artists to win big. My favorite category, other than those Big Four – Best Album/Record/Song/New Artist – is Best Music Video. You can watch the nominees here on Drempt featuring those 5 videos.
A unifying feature is that these vids are true stunners – Beyoncé on a sinking cop car with her always fierce choreography; Leon Bridges with poignant, moving, and relevant points of view; Coldplay with crazy composites and mind-tripping graphics; Jamie xx with about 300 lil warriors, a fake Eiffel Tower, and no CGI; and OK Go with an unbelievable weightless party.
Now, let’s peel back the curtain on those nominated videos and go behind the scenes on how they were made. This is what Vision Followed Through is all about!
The greatest gem of behind-the-scene-ness comes from Curbed, the online site focused on homes, neighborhoods, and cities. It makes sense because the Formation video takes place in a New Orleans home, or does it? Come to find, the entire video was shot in California and the production team had less than a week to style the front of the plain white house, redesign the interior to look like a NOLA gothic mansion, and had about 3 days to create the costumes! And that sinking car scene? Shot in a water tank on a sound stage with CGI to look like New Orleans. Read more about it on Curbed.
Leon Bridges, “River”
Filmed on location in Baltimore, Bridges had this to say about the song and video:You can read more about the song and video here on MTV.
Coldplay, “Up & Up”
This behind the scenes video from Coldplay’s YouTube channel reminds me of MTV’s much missed Making the Video show (for a quick trip down and early-2000’s memory lane, check out this post from Bustle). For years MTV took us on a backstage tour of how music videos were made before world premiering them. Below you can follow Coldplay as they take us on a 5-minute, green screen filled, recap on how Up & Up was shot and edited.
Jamie xx, “Gosh”
Believe it or not, but there was no CGI or 3D effects in this video. The Gosh video was shot on location in Zhejiang, China where there already is a replica Eiffel Tower. The most time-consuming effect seems to be the dying of 300 young boy’s hair and choreographing their scenes. In this behind the scenes video, we see the boys prep for their scenes and how drones help with the shoot. For an even deeper look, check out this article on Dazed with director Romain Gavras on the making of a music video for a song that’s “not a radio song, [where] there are no lyrics, it’s on an independent label, it’s already got a music video, and it’s a year old.”
OK Go, “Upside Down & Inside Out”
What can we say about OK Go? Ever since their debut treadmill video, “Here It Goes Again”, we’ve grown to expect over-the-top videos from the group. “Upside Down & Inside Out” doesn’t disappoint. In this behind the scene post from the band’s own website, we learn they filmed the entire video in a special plane high above Russia that allows weightless Zero G forces 27 seconds at a time. How did they film a 3:20 long music video then?
“After each period of weightlessness, it takes about five minutes for the plane to recover and prepare for then next round. Because we wanted the video to be a single, uninterrupted routine, we shot continuously over the course of 8 consecutive weightless periods, which took about 45 minutes, total. We paused our actions, and the music, during the non-weightless periods, and then cut out these sections and smoothed over each transition with a morph.”
Read the full behind the scenes story, including how long it took to train and how they found the light attendants, here. The video below is how they shot the last scene…so COOL!