How did India become the back-drop to the video?
When we were writing the treatment and listening to the song, we heard a lot of Indian undertones to the beat. We immediately envisioned an elaborate Indian wedding with Iggy as the bride. Initially, because of budget constraints, we thought Los Angeles was our only option for the shoot.
However, after speaking with Iggy and the label, everyone felt that India would be the best backdrop for our vision. Fortunately, Iggy dropped a tremendous amount of her own money which was really instrumental in making the entire trip a reality. We really wanted to pay tribute to India’s incredible culture and its rich and colorful Bollywood roots, so we felt that if we were going to shoot a video about an Indian wedding, it would be most respectful + authentic if we did it in India.
How did shooting in India compare with, say, New York?
Shooting in India was one of the most surreal and humbling experiences of our lives. Compared to shooting in New York, the experience of working in Mumbai, was night and day. For this project, we worked with Geoff McLean from Vision Film, side by side with our producer, Brendan Lynch.
This was our first project working with a producer, so the process of preproduction was very different for us. Prior to arriving in Mumbai, Brendan (who speaks a bit of Hindi) worked with our Indian production company, Stratum Films, to secure locations, extras and elephants. We still can’t believe he was able to pull off everything we needed.
When we arrived in India, we continued the preproduction process, working with our Indian crew. Just being in Mumbai, was really inspiring for us and definitely contributed to the way we approached making this video. We worked with our crew to make sure every decision we made was culturally respectful and authentic to India, and we also worked closely with our choreographer, Devang, who is also a Bollywood director. He was a serious help on set, and always super on point.
This was also our first project working with a DP. Fortunately, we had Eli Born on board and the knowledge he was able to offer really enhanced our setups. We certainly understand now the importance of a good crew for a big shoot like this. After wrapping, everyone felt a bond that was indescribable – and we realized that the connection we felt with everyone involved surpassed any kind of culture barrier. We’ll never forget it.
In true Bollywood style there’s a cast of hundreds, how did you go about finding the dancers and extras?
Prior to arriving in Mumbai, Stratum sent us auditions for some of the main characters in the video. This made the casting process really easy for us. Devang, assembled the Indian dancers and worked with Iggy to create a Bollywood dance routine that was unique to the track and Iggy’s style.
Did you edit and post back home?
For this project, the turnaround was very quick, so we started editing immediately when we got home. After a very stressful process of 12 straight, 16-hour workdays and eight rough-cuts, we finally came to an edit where everyone was happy. We definitely have a better understanding of working with a large label and artist, and the kinds of compromises that are inevitable in the process. It’s all part of the game though, right?
Director/Post Production- BRTHR
Director of Photography- Eli Born
Executive Producer- Geoff McLean
Executive Producer (India, Stratum FIlms)- Avinash Shankar
Producer- Brendan Lynch
Commissioner- Natalie Arnett
Director’s Rep- Alexa Haywood
Head of Production- Manish Trehan
Prod. Manager- Ganesh Shetty
1st Assistant Director- Pooja Bedi
Prod. Assistant- Shiva Pujari
Choreographer- Devang Desai
1st AC- Devendra Thakkar
Additional Photography- BRTHR
Art Director- Durgaprasad Mahapatra
Asst. Art Director- Kristel Makashyap
Wardrobe- Neepa Shah
Stylist- Alejandra Hernandez
Production Company- Vision Film
Hair Stylist- Sami Knight
Make Up Artist- Cassie Lomas
Artist Management- Cassandra Gracey (Turn First)
Chaperon- Karishma Makhni
Sound- Anil D’Silva
Sound Design- BRTHR
Dance Coordinator- Shree
Travel Coordinator- Smitha Shetty