David Knight - 26th Sept 2011

Mischa Livingstone's video for LA band City City's Promises combines a very tricky visual technique with an ambitious narrative - which involves the interaction of a couple who's relationship is collapsing, with their former (in-love) selves from photos...

The whole live action shoot was shot in stop motion over several days - as Mischa explains below...


Mischa Livingstone on making the video for City City 'Promises'

"I had thought about shooting the whole thing live action, then turning it into stop motion after the fact. I did a number of tests but was never satisfied.  I really wanted that organic, slightly flawed look that you can only get from doing real stop motion. It wasn't something I had done before either, so I was excited to take on the challenge.
"The piece is more or less a fluid master from start to finish, meaning we had no choice but to shoot the entire thing in one take (the portraits had all been shot and edited in advance). It also had to correspond exactly to the music, so I was forever counting frames on set, figuring out what point in the song we were at, and recalculating how many more frames we needed to shoot.  
"The post production on this was extensive, as we first had to get the timing on everything just right, then dive into After Effects to make all the portraits look believable.  I did have a moment at first where I was terrified none of it would work, but between my editor, Eric Grush, and my effects person, Michael Kelley, I was more than in good hands.

"I'm amazed at my actors (Noah Baron and Ashphord Jacoway) for putting up with me and my insane requests, be it falling into a freezing swimming pool fully clothed in slow motion (in February!) or requiring them to hold the most uncomfortable of poses for hours on end. And I have to thank the band for believing in my vision and giving me total freedom to work. I don't think they quite knew what they were getting themselves into, but I am very grateful for their tremendous patience and support."


DirectorMischa Livingstone
CastNoah Baron and Ashphord Jacoway
Production designerEd Munoz and Cori McCullough
EditorEric Grush

David Knight - 26th Sept 2011

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