Cracking first music video. How did you find the transition from making your short film, H Positive, (see earlier interview here) to making the video for Chase & Status?
Thank you. It has been a real honour directing a music video for Chase & Status as I’m genuinely a fan of their music.
The transition felt like a natural one to be honest and I wasn’t nervous about it. For me, the key to storytelling is to create a thought-provoking idea that resonates with the audience.
The viewer has to feel something and that’s what I hope to achieve going forward.
Having watched previous videos of Tom Grennan (the lead singer) I saw how much emotion he shows in his singing, therefore I wanted to use close ups of his expressions to convey emotion without dialogue.
He is such a talent and as soon as I saw him singing his heart out in the open top coffin, I knew that we were going to be okay.
Did you collaborate with the band on the script and the production – or were you left mainly to your own devices?
Absolutely. Chase & Status were very hands on and we spoke a lot, along with meeting Tom Grennan as well.
It’s actually quite a funny story… I was told that Chase & Status wanted to have a call with me sometime over the weekend.
I get a text from the band saying ‘can you talk now?’ It was approaching midnight on Friday night and I was on the sofa watching Family Guy …
I said, ‘of course’ and we spoke for a while.
I remember them explaining ‘sorry for the late call but we’re backstage and about to perform at a festival in Belgium’ and I could hear hundreds of thousands of fans chanting their name in the background… and there was me, with Stewie Griffin on pause, sat in my pants on the sofa talking to them. Totally surreal.
We spoke a lot during the whole process and I loved that they were all over it.
Exceptionally smart but just normal guys at the same time.
What were the main challenges of the production and how did you resolve them?
I work with a producer who has her own team so it’s like having three producers on a job who share a unique shorthand with each other and all overlap within their roles.
They finish each other’s sentences and all work fluidly together as a trio.
It was amazing to witness and before I’ve even muttered the words ‘I’m worried about…’ there was already an answer in place.
What were the key lessons you learnt about music video directing on this project?
Stay true to the idea and focus on getting exactly what you need in the can. Everyone else on set is concerned with other things so it’s 100% on the director to make sure they have everything they need to tell the story.
Anything else you’d like to share?
Just a genuine thank you to Sonya Sier, Rebecca Mason, Amanda Tuckwell, Katie Dolan and Martin Roker for taking me under their wing on this project.