Ha. Just when we were going to ask you to shed a bit more light on the narrative we found your descriptive quote:
“We can all relate to the feeling of being in our own heads. Through connections comes disconnections. This video is a glimpse into a group of kids who spent a little too long repressing their urges, and because of it, the weirdo starts to leak out.”
That makes perfect sense. What triggered the idea – was it imagery, a book, a feeling that prompted you to write the narrative? Or simply the tonal quality of Josh Pan?
I’m not actually sure what sparked the idea initially, but was probably a mix of a lot of things swirling around. I knew I wanted to make something that felt both innocent and equally devious. We are all problem-riddled self-propagating weirdo machines, and most of the time we are told not to talk about the things we really feel. I liked the idea of removing these character’s normal social filters while also dusting them with a healthy dose of naive teenage fatalism.
In the same way of removing these kids’ filters, I wanted to do the same for myself. Was this a pretentious self actualizing piece about aimless youthful meandering or a silly/fun exercise about making fun of myself and everyone who still has a lot of growing up to do? ….. (ha) hopefully the latter.
Did the script evolve out a collaborative process with the producers?
While I always love the collaboration, I think my producers could see I was a little beaten down from that year and knew I needed a chance to purge some unaffected ideas.
We were going to say how cool that the producers didn’t want to perform, but Josh Pan is in the cast right?
Actually, Josh was in Taipei (I think), during the window of our shoot which really opened up the possibilities of what the project could be. Thankfully everyone was into the Kool-aid I was serving up. That was Josh FaceTiming in the video tho. We found a way to sneak him in from abroad.
How did you direct the cast – did you have time for rehearsals or did it all happen on the day?
On videos like these, you never have the time you wish you had to make them. Everything had to happen on the shoot day. Luckily all the cast was totally on board with everything I threw at them. I don’t think there was one scene where I wasn’t cracking up behind the monitor.
Where was the location and was the shoot straight forward? What were the main challenges?
The house we used was somewhere deep in Bel Air. It was honestly one of the easier shoots in terms of production. Small, contained, not too far away. With that being said, we still had to re-cast one of our actors that morning due to them getting sick…..(and no, not from all the pudding.)
This video really grows on you, it’s not nearly so weird now, it’s a groove with a smile.
That’s great to hear. I never know how people will react these days, but I was just happy to be able to shoot something that didn’t take itself too seriously.
See more work of Daniel Henry here
Director: Daniel Henry
Executive Producer: Jimmy Sudekum
Producer: Henry Reed
DP: Trevor Wineman
1st AC: Ajiri Akpolo
Gaffer: Brendan Kenney
Art Director: Honor Hamilton
Set Decorator: Brandon Clark
Production Assistant: Karla Mera
Colorist: Tanner Hall
Production Company: Villa House
Directors Rep: Emily Sanders / Rêveur