The ‘Bad Bad News’ and ‘Bet Ain’t Worth The Hand’ music videos aired in the lead up to Leon Bridges’ eagerly anticipated album ‘Good Things’, which is set to release on 4th May. MPC’s Ricky Gausis worked with director Natalie Rae to achieve the raw and gritty grade.
‘Bad Bad News’ stars model-of-the-moment Paloma Elsesser, who is catcalled by a stranger on her way home, so she decides to follow and confront him, busting out some dance moves along the way.
The music video is based on Bridges’ lyrics, which Rae says are beautiful and moving: “I wanted to complement and bring to life his ideas. In this case we showed how Paloma’s story, being catcalled and rising up against the harassment would work well for the song’s message. Women are really turning bad news into something good. Leon loved the idea of propelling the momentum of this movement.”
When grading the film, Gausis was keen to enhance the simplicity of the shots: “I wanted to make it so that the images looked like they’d been loved, but nothing too crazy. I also wanted to enhance the grainy and dirty element of the locations, for example, accentuating the starkness of the underpass.”
Rae added: “The shots captured reality in a beautiful, raw way which allowed Paloma and Leon to dance freely and really be in the moment. Ricky’s grading heightened the shots - the red of Paloma’s trench coat was enhanced to make it even more vivid and beautiful; the underpass was made even darker and grittier.”
‘Bet Ain’t Worth The Hand’ is based on Bridges’ experiences of growing up and having trouble standing on solid ground. The film sees him searching through people’s homes in pursuit of something meaningful. Rae said: “People may think that he’s searching for something physical, but what he’s actually looking for is the last time he felt a human connection to someone.”
The film’s grading accentuated this emotional sentiment. Gausis said: “In the beginning shot, Leon elevates into his own mind and encounters all of these different heart-breaking scenarios. We wanted something more stylized for this first shot and more natural for the remaining shots, to disconnect the two worlds and to emphasize the transition”. He added: “The first shot is a little more graded but in a good way - not too heavy-handed.”
This marks the third time that Gausis and Rae have joined forces – they worked together on Anderson .Paak’s video for the Grammy’s ‘Gospel Come Down’ as well as a Zillow campaign for Deutch. Gausis said: “Natalie is a great collaborator, really cool. She knows what she wants and she is very considered as to how a grade should compliment her narrative”.
Zachary Luke Kislevitz
Cabin Editing Company
Lauren Brown, Nick Deliberto, Andrew Steinitz