The ultimate Creative Collaboration Combination™️ is back as we team up once again with our good friend Novo Amor. If you have been following our work, you’d know we’ve mostly done music videos and live sessions together, but this time we ramped things up a gear to produce a full documentary ‘Please Don’t Stand Up When Room Is In Motion’.
The film uncovers Ali (Novo Amor)’s journey during the production of his second album ‘Cannot Be, Whatsoever’. It embraces the mess, chaos and clutter that surrounds the creative process of writing an album; not letting go and seeing where the path takes you.
In no doubt, this is one of our largest and most ambitious projects to date. Even if we weren’t trying to film it during a global pandemic. Totalling almost a year in production, there was a lot to capture and bring together so it was a real joint effort across our live-action, animation and editing teams to get things over the line.
As most of the world was in lockdown, we stripped back the crew and sent in a solo team of our veteran filmmaker and Director Josh, armed with a camera and enough PPE to fight the virus single-handedly. The single-camera shooting style lent itself to an intimate aesthetic of an artist taking their time to craft their latest work and create a first-hand point of view that allows us to simply watch (that’s cinéma vérité for any you film nerds out there).
Being geographically tied to Cardiff, animation played a huge part in our storytelling as it gave us the option to expand the scale of the film’s focus wider than just Ali’s studio. We spent a good time deciphering the style, experimenting with different looks and figuring out what this animated world looked and moved like. We eventually decided on a minimal, grainy style that took elements from the album cover and matched the tone of the film so it could pull everything together.
Scattered throughout the film are some stripped-back performances of Novo Amor’s greatest hits and newest tracks, but as beautiful as they were, the film needed a big ‘wow’ moment. A pinnacle. A pièce de résistance. Shooting in the dead of night, we rigged up Ali’s home with over 50 lightbulbs that magically transported Ali away as he delivered a minimalist performance of the album’s finale track.
Alongside the full documentary, to drum up a bit of hype around Novo Amor’s album announcement, we also created a series of teasers, cryptically hiding album details within the images. With the main film still in its infancy of an edit, these three short teasers built anticipation, establishing and solidifying a visual language for all the content that would surround the album’s release.
Not one to shy away from the spotlight, Josh scrubbed up for a Q&A with Ali before a live-stream premiere of the film in partnership with Youtube Red Carpet. With only limited time, we assembled a crack squad including our good pals SR Productions, who helped us with sorting out all the technical stuff behind the scenes. Go give it a watch, but maybe skip a bit of the intro, because Josh ends up talking about his hair for a little too long. 🙄
What we ended up with is something beautiful; intimate and refreshingly open and honest. It allowed people a never-seen-before view into Ali’s outlook as well as his process and was a massive hit with Novo Amor’s ever-growing fanbase. With the film already grossing over 165,000 views, we can’t wait to see what the next Novo Amor chapter is going to look like.
Since its release ‘Please Don’t Stand Up When Room Is In Motion’ has gone on to be selected for the International Film Festival of Wales 2021 where Josh was awarded the prize of ‘Rising Star’ for his directorial work.