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Lovebyrd 'Wanna Die Before You Do' by Dustie Carter

Rob Ulitski - 4th Aug 2020

Two lovers are on the run from the law in Dustie Carter's mesmerising promo for German band Lovebyrd's Wanna Die Before You Do. 

Following their otherworldly video for Vancouver China back in May, Carter and DoP Mike Dalton carry over the colour-washed hazy style that made it so impactful, and elevate the drama to new heights.  

The look of the video balances nostalgia and Americana, and it feels as if we are almost watching someone else's memories in our own minds. Shot on Super 8mm film, the video is absolutely stunning in its execution, and perfectly encapsulates the sense of regret and heartbreak in the track. 


“I Wanna Die Before You is essentially a short film about two lovers on the run from the law. As one bleeds out in the rear seat, the other, riddled with guilt for allowing this to happen attempts to elude the police.  The concept immediately resonated with the band and I. The story and song share a kindred tone and once we added the visuals we could sense the harmony. Looking at the finished piece, it is hard to imagine one existing without the other. 

Super 8 not only gave us the look and texture we were going for, but also created a new atmosphere on set.

"From the beginning Mike (DP) and I knew how important the look would be in order to meld with the song's tone. After talking with Mike, we decide to go for it and shoot on Super 8mm film. The film not only gave us the look and texture we were going for, but also created a new atmosphere on set. I found it allowed me to be completely present with the actors since I wasn't watching a monitor, and forced me to stay closely connected with the story, thinking about every edit since the amount of film we had was limited. This really encouraged me to trust my gut as a director.”


"In the early stages of pre-production, Dustin and I knew that we wanted to capture the driving scenes all in-studio using rear projection and poor man’s process lighting. We had only done this process once in the past (without rear projection), and while it turned out fairly convincing then, we learned plenty of valuable lessons for our next go. With those learned lessons and our incredibly talented gaffer, Tim Hawn at our side, we had the confidence we needed to pull this off.

We wanted to capture the driving scenes all in-studio using rear projection... and decided we needed to shoot our own plates.

"One of the more challenging parts to this process was sourcing the background plates we would end up projecting for the driving scenes. Dustin and I searched multiple stock footage websites, but ultimately decided that we needed to shoot our own plates as we had a very specific look in mind.

"We ended up finding the perfect locations for the driving scenes and the opening scene and scheduled a couple evenings to shoot out of our studios trusty minivan. For the front plate we mounted via RigWheels Cloud Mount, a Black Magic Pocket Cinema 4k to the hood. The side plates were captured with Panasonic GH5’s. And finally, the back plate, was captured with the Red Helium on a Freefly Movi Pro.

"This project couldn't have been done without an extreme level of trust and collaboration between everyone. Because Lovebyrd are based out of Germany, we collaborated via Facetime/Zoom/Instagram every step of the way - finalizing the script, casting, wardrobe, production, and finally post. Add to this, production wrapped just days before a state-wide stay-at-home order went into place due to COVID-19. This meant that Sam and Brian (colourist) had to handle all of the post remotely, utilizing and Zoom chats to stay connected with myself, Mike, and the band, as we brought the piece to life."

Rob Ulitski - 4th Aug 2020


  • Director's notes
  • Narrative
  • Indie pop
  • Alt Pop
  • Super 8mm

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Dustie Carter
Stolen Sun
Production Company
Stolen Sun


Director of Photography
Mike Dalton
Focus Puller
Jesse Bader


Tim Hawn
Key Grip
Ethan Waddell


Lead actor
Jenna McDonald
Lead actor
McKenzie Moser


Sam Baiamonte


Brian Singler


Post production company

Other credits


Bruton Stroube

Rob Ulitski - 4th Aug 2020

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