Rei Brown

music video by
daniel antebi

What does it feel like to be an untouchable island? I think we all have deep empathy for the implcations behind this question right now. Most of us are islands in are own homes, seperating ourselves. So, in a time when touching the people we love is forbidden because it might make them sick, I want to stretch through transient means from one island to another. I want us to use the power of light, shadow, reflection, wind, and water to create magical moments of of intimacy, vulnerability, and touch.

This music video will be a flowing montage of striking portaits. Each portait will begin with a single person alone in a particular setting. They will interact and dance with a transient element like light reflecting off water, a face’s shadow, wind blowing a cloth, or simply water foaming on a beach. Slowly, in each portatit, a second figure will arise. Eyes in a reflection, a hand breaking through the water’s surface, or even a fully body may appear in a shadow. This second character will struggle to touch or connect with our first character. Something will seperate them – water far between them, one’s shadow barely missing another’s, or simply sheer cloth between their lips. Finally, when we can’t bare it any longer, the two characters will make contact and embrace – dancing and flowing together no matter the setting or seeming impedement. We will end on this hopefull and joyful note. 

Locations + Transient Elements:
Each of the four location (beach, apartment, field, city) has oppurtunites for several transient elements. Below I use pictures/videos to explore how we may capture these spots. Of course, we will prepare for each location, imagining how our characters may interact with elements there, but we will also leave room for play on set. Allowing room in the schedule for exploring those unplanable moments is key to the authenticity of the piece.

B E A CH  /  L A K E
Make sure to click on some of these pictures because some are videos, like the two below ;)



F I E L D 

C I T Y    S T R E E T S 

*In the city, I also see the elment of severe distance playing a role in keeping two characters seperated.

The Reveal:
Let’s have a sureal reveal... To set up the reveal we need to establish a status-quo. The very first image in the video will be of a motocycle covered in a tarp battling against the wind (like below). Later in the video, right as the song really kicks in, we will cut back to the motorcycle and the flapping with stop. When it starts moving again it will be strange. Their will be weird slow organic movements underneath it. We will come to realize their is a body beneath the tarp on the motorcycle. The body will dance as if it were wind, trying to reach out from under the tarp. I’ve discussed this idea with Rei and am happy to explain it more over the phone or facetime. It’ll really be the ‘wow’ moment in the video with out feeling like a gimmick because the dancing will be so beautiful.


Editing and Camera Movement:
The camera is going to be in almost constant motion except for a few static poetic fermatas in the song. I want to be in flow with the characters’ movements. Example of camera flowing with movement:

And here’s an example of what I envision for the editing, from my film unfold. There will be constant match cuts where locations and movement seemlessly flows into one another. (skip 56 seconds in if you’re in a rush):

I’ve been friends with Amy Gardner for a while. We’ve worked together several times. I think she’d be the perfect to choreo this. Her work is often incredibly abstract yet the emotions she communicates are clear. She’ll do a killer job of communicating the struggle and need for these two bodies to connect in each setting. Here is her reel:

Let’s cast real coulpes, queer folks, and phenomenal dancers. Besides the folks Amy and I know, I have great ‘discovery’ casting directors we can work with (discovery as in finding real peopel). Besides casting vibe, I have also put some wardrobe inspiration below. Note the baggy aesthetic.

Rei Performing:
The most important part! I want to keep this thread super simple: Him looking stoically at the camera with something rushing behind him, either water while he’s on a boat or pavement while a car drives. We will juxtapose this perfomance with another version of the shot where Rei simply stares into camera in slow-motion. In slow-mo, the textures behind him will melt as he looks at us. See below for Rei’s lens gazing abilities:

Four locaitons and eight performers, all in the age of Covid, and on a limited budget. It won’t be easy, but, this song and its theme hit me hard. I’m sure we can make some version of this a reality and give your a stellar video for Islands. I hope we can collaborate on this, Rei.

Thanks for your time.

- Daniel

P.S. Click the menu button on the top right of this site to see my previous work.

And if you need something to make you smile while in quaratine, click here.