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Raleigh Ritchie 'Aristocrats' by Jacob Anderson

Rob Ulitski - 12th May 2020

Jacob Anderson's latest outing as musical alter ego Raleigh Ritchie has prompted this thought-provoking video for new track Aristocrats, directed by Anderson himself. 

It is a family portrait through British history, that switches through different time periods through appropriate costumes, from the times of the Crusades, to Victorian times and the 1960s. But in Aristocrats, this great British family are black, as Anderson laments the one-sided teaching of British history, switching out the overwhelmingly white British aristocracy with a more diverse set of characters.

Switching between periods, the barriers between the periods begin to break down. As the camera draws closer to Raleigh, these scenes become more confused and mixed up - a manifestation of the artist's frustration at being served up a skewed version of history.

Through motion control, DoP Joel Honeywell utilises simple tracking shots to bring the focus to the characters and costumes, punctuated by exaggerated closeups as the concepts builds towards its frenetic and haunting climax. Editor Jo Lewandowska cleverly intercuts the different setups to create seamless transitions, with the switch-up in pace in the final few moments a genius balance of tension and emotion. 

JACOB ANDERSON: 

"I love my country, but I don't always feel loved by it. With this video, I wanted to explore this."

"British history is complicated, especially as a POC, and history is everything! It's what we learn from to help us build our future.

"Back in school, I didn't learn much about British history, aside from the country's victories and a version of some of its atrocities. Sometimes it's a confusing place, and although I love my country, I don't always feel loved by it. With this video, I wanted to explore this and my relationship to my own history and the history of those who came before me." 

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Rob Ulitski - 12th May 2020

Tags

  • Director's notes
  • Motion control
  • Performance
  • VFX
  • Alternative R&B
  • history

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Credits

Production/Creative

Director
Jacob Anderson
Producer
Precious Mahaga
Production Company
Executive Producer
Luke Tierney
1st AD
Steven Eniraiyetan

Camera

Director of Photography
Joel Honeywell
Focus Puller
Daniel Lemon
2nd AC
Christian Swaine

Lighting/Grip

Gaffer
Ben Millar

Art

Art Director
Alexandra Toomey

Wardrobe

Wardrobe
Jodie-simone Howe
Hair & Make-up
Sara Bowden

Editorial

Editor
Jo Lewandowska
Editing company
Cut+Run

Grading

Colourist
Simon Bourne

VFX

VFX Company
Analog Studios
VFX
Fabio Zaveti
Post production company
Framestore
Post Producer
Chris Anthony

Commission

Label
Alacran

Other credits

Video Playback

Trevor Kelly

Sound Playback

Roger Cutting

VFX Supervisor (on Set)

Dan Hawkins

Motion Control Operator

James Gillett

Motion Control Assistant

Robert Legg

Grip

Jim Philpott

Grip Trainee

Peter Blewden

Electricians

Bruce Melhuish, Maxime Hodgkinson, Luke Greenan

SFX Technicians

Bernie Newton, Michael Taylor

Art Department Assistant

Lady Devine R. Tugade

Assistant Costume Designer

Veronica Johnson

Costume Assistants

Hannah Olivia Newland, Yodea Marquel Williams

Hair & Makeup

Chloë Dixon, Sophie Scott

Runners

Joel Witter, Archie Trueger, Elizabeth Johnston, Merika Holmes

Edit Producer

Maggie McDermott

2D Artist

Guiseppina Cataldo

VFX Producer

Rose Nicholson

Cast

Jacob Anderson, Ray Adedeji, Lola Ajayi, Thomas Huggins, Sinead Hunter, Munashe Johnson, Sarah Jane Martin, Verna Williams

Rob Ulitski - 12th May 2020

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