Promonews - 4th Apr 2013

John Grant goofs charmingly around London, from basketball court to pet shop to Turkish barber’s, in the video for Greatest Motherfucker, from new album Pale Green Ghosts, directed by Lucy Luscombe (whose short film Candy Girl was recent winner of the BFI Future Film Award). It proves to be a smart counterpoint to the autobiographical angst that pervades this and pretty much every other Grant song. And during his encounters with various strangers on his travels, the layers start to peel away to reveal the hidden depths within…

“The concept came pretty quickly upon hearing the track; a portrait of man and his refusal to give in to loneliness through small talk with strangers and shopkeepers,” Lucy explains. “I wanted to champion the guy on the periphery who still tries at life.

“John’s brief was fairly loose, he just knew he wanted something bleak. So I set about creating a narrative with multiple tones where the bleakness seeps through slowly. We both love comedian Julie Davis and the Alexander Payne short 14e arrondissement and used both as reference for tone and character.

“The shoot itself was incredibly fun but crazy as I wanted to shoot real living locations, no extras, no control. We kept the crew to a minimum and called on DP Chris Clarke for his ability to capture real moments and make them look beautiful.

“We just pushed John into situations with strangers, he stayed in character and improvised his way through the 16 hour shoot day. He has an insane ability to engage anyone, whatever age or background, in lengthy conversation in about 20 different languages. Whether it was a tweaked-out tranny, an old lady, a Pakistani shopkeeper or a Turkish barber, John had them all engrossed.”

PRO Credits

Credits

DirectorLucy Luscombe
Production CompanyShameless
Executive ProducerJoe Walker
ProducerRik Green
Director of PhotographyChris Clarke
1st ADEd Tucker
EditorSteve Ackroyd
StylistSophie Moss
Make-upIsabell Boettcher
CommissionerJohn Moule

Promonews - 4th Apr 2013

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