MATISYAHU 'HARD WAY'
PRODUCER / ASSISTANT DIRECTOR / COMPOSITING
This is the 3rd video Joe Baughman and I did for Matisyahu. In many respects this is unusual for us, as it’s a more conventional “singer singing his song” video, which we typically don’t do. We were able to connect the first three videos we had done for this album by using the same child actor we used in the Surrender and Broken Car videos.
- The “pool” shots that start around 1:24 were kind of an accident. We had rented an underwater rig for our RED camera. When we were setting up these shots, we discovered that our rental unit was broken and airtight and therefore unable to safely do underwater shots as per the storyboards/concept. Given the fact that it was around 2am on a weeknight, we didn’t have many options, so we shifted our concept to him being above the water. Neither of us are terribly proud of the final shots, but adapting like this is necessary when you only have access to the talent during a very brief window.
- For the final shots we had set up a harness and rig for lifting Matis up in the air. In post, I removed all the rigging and swapped in a rope, as per the visual motif. When we sent the final video in to the record company there were concerns and reservations (for some crazy reason) that it might look like he’s hanging himself at the end of the video, swinging dead in the last shot. So they had us remove the rope, which then created the appearance of him levitating (which also didn’t really match anything aesthetically). We were never terribly happy with the compromise. But the real irritation set in months later when it was finally released, when I watched it for the first time post-release and had the realization: wait, why didn’t I just have multiple ropes raising him up, given the fact that he’s wrapped up in multiple ropes anyway throughout the video. This would also solve the problem of it looking like he was hanging himself. Problem solved. Except the video had already been released through various media outlets. Rats…