Monday, October 27, 2014

OK Go - "I Won't Let You Down"

The video for "I Won't Let You Down" was released on October 27, 2014, premiering on The Today Show. Similar to many of the band's past videos, the video is a continuous one shot music video. The band members perform the video while riding Honda UNI-CUBs, personal mobility units similar to the Segway, moving through a warehouse before moving outside for larger choreographed routines with a number of dancers dressed in traditional Japanese school uniforms and using colored umbrella props. The video was filmed on a camera mounted to a octocopter drone, which allows for ground-level and bird's-eye view shots during these routines, including a final high altitude pan of the surrounding landscape. The Japanese electropop group, Perfume also make a cameo at the start of the video.

OK Go was inspired by a trip they had taken to Japan and visited Tokyo's Robot Restaurant, which had numerous robots moving about the large facility in motions set to heavy-metal music; Tim Norwind said that the experience was "the best hour of my life". They obtained help of producer Morihiro Harano would linked them to Honda's internal ad agency, which led to them being put in contact with Japanese choreographer Airman to help plan out the routines. Honda would go on to fund the film and provide the UNI-CUBs and the octocopter for the video. The video was filmed in a vacant warehouse area in the Chiba district of Japan near Tokyo. Frontman Damian Kulash and Kazuaki Seki co-directed the video. The video was filmed in double time, recording the events at half the speed of the song and then sped up for the final video as to allow them to complete the complex choreography. In the near final shots, which show the band and dances from far overhead simulating a large dot matrix display, Harano had set large speakers at the corners of the area to play the song in half-time to help all the performers synchronize with the music. The camera drone was controlled both with GPS and manual control for fine adjustment by Harano and his crew. The video took between 50 and 60 takes to obtain the final one-shot product.

The choreography in the video was inspired by the elaborate routines of musical director Busby Berkeley. The opening sequence, primarily focusing on the OK Go band members, was made to feel like a futuristic version of Gene Kelly's dancing in Singin' in the Rain. The final shot, with the camera panning across the Japan landscape, was inspired by The Beatles use of extended outros, as to give the viewer something "that packed a bit more entertainment even after the main part was over", according to Harano.

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