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J Cole ft Amber Coffman 'She Knows' by Sam Pilling

David Knight - 18th Feb 2014

A marvellous video for J Cole's She Knows by Sam Pilling about a teenager in Los Angeles who blows off school to have some fun with his buddy, but gets much more than he's bargained for. 

Sam put non-professional actor Armani Cooper, playing Kyle, with actors Harold Perrineau and Rochelle Aytes as his parents, to create something very believable. And J Cole makes a telling cameo too...

Sam Pilling:

"I wanted to explore the everyday lies and secrets that can exist in families, particularly between parents and their children. However, I liked the idea of playing with people's expectations by turning the initial deceit on it's head and revealing a far greater secret from an unlikely character.

"I really wanted the video to feel authentic so we reached out to a friend of mine (shout out to Copelan Hackwith) who put us in touch with some of his skater mates. Both Armani & Taqwa blew us away from the start.

"Cole and his management got behind the idea and wanted to make the video as filmic as possible, suggesting we cast real actors. I was excited at the possibility of working with Harold. He was really into the story and needless to say it was an absolute pleasure and an honour to work with him.

After casting our lead boy it was important for me that we didn't just get 'named actors' in the video but that Kyle's parents actually looked like they could be his parents.  The combination of Harold & Rochelle seemed like the perfect match.

"We shot the video over a few long days in and around South Central. The whole crew worked really hard to make it happen - massive thanks to Sarah Park who produced the hell out of it ("standaaaaaaard" ) and for Pat Scola and his camera crew who nailed the photography '100 peh-cent'. 

"It was invaluable to have a few days working intimately with just Armani, Taqwa, and a small camera crew. It gave the two boys a chance to really bond and for them to feel comfortable with us too. 

"Having spent the best part of two months in LA it was time to go home so we did the post back in the UK. Because of the nature of the shoot, we had A LOT of footage but as ever Ellie at Speade did a great job of moulding it all together beautifully. 

"James Tillett did a really lovely job on the grade and brought the whole project to life. Sound design was always going to be an important part of the video as I wanted to get the balance between song, sound & dialogue just right. Shout out to Zak Razvi who put us in contact with Luis & Henning at Soundtree - as with the whole process, it was an honour to be working with such talented people."

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David Knight - 18th Feb 2014


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Sam Pilling
Sarah Park
Production Company
Executive Producer
Laura Tunstall
1st AD
Kenneth Taylor
1st AD
Evrard Salomon
Production Supervisor
Evan Urman
Production Supervisor
Kourtney Gleason


Director of Photography
Pat Scola
1st AC
Jake Bianco


Koby Poulton


Production designer
Mandy Cheng


Hair & Make-up
Neicy Smalls
Costume designer
Michelle Thompson


Casting director
Ivy Isenberg


Ellie Johnson
Editing company
Sound design
Luis Almau
Sound design
Henning Knoepfel


James Tillett
Colour grade company


Chaka Pilgrim


2nd AD
Mark Saleem Beasley
Sound Recording
Martin Kittappa

Other credits

2nd AC

Elver Hernandez, Kathryn Begle

Set Dec/Prop Master

Andrew Drayton, Jason Trinidad

Art PAs

Bryan Fulk, Jason Look

Key Costume Asst

Jordan Scheinberg

Costume Asst

Riley Billingsley

Best Boy Electric

Stephen Chang

Key Grip

Eddie Apodoca, Ranjeet Rajan

Best Boy Grip

Avihai Yaffe, Alex Tamayo

Asst Prod Coordinator/Key PA

David Cho


Will Anderson, Ben Epand, Matt Faigh, Aram Martirosyan, Danita Clark, Sandy Danto, Therese Whitten, Mario Ocean Anaya



Armani Cooper


Harold Perrineau


Rochelle Aytes


Taqwa Thomas


Mike Tellez



David Knight - 18th Feb 2014

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