Oh my dear sweet baby Skywalker.
I never, NEVER expected that in a mere month, we could do something like this. Milynn and I were on the way back from the beach on a gorgeous California day. We were amped up for Comic Con the next week and the fairly painful game of volleyball we had just played in Venice when Katy Perry’s “California Gurls” comes on the radio. We’re singing along and Milynn shouts over the wind and the catchy beats: “We should totally do a parody of this! About geeky girls!”
I think my reaction was somewhere along the lines of “Whuh?”
She caught me up in her fervor, we started coming up with lyrics in the car, and a month later we cut to THIS:
We originally were thinking we could get something together to release before Comic Con, an idea that was both adorably naive and completely ludicrous. As we fleshed out lyrics and brought on our friends Clare Grant and Rileah Vanderbilt, the idea just kept snowballing. Soon we had Seth Green attached for the rap portion and we started thinking of cameos and dance sequences. Rileah’s amazing friend Dave Yarovesky agreed to direct it for us (You can see his awesomesauce reel here), the ridiculously talented choreographer Ben Wolff (who, happily, admitted to being a little obsessed with Katy and her moves) said he’d do something fun for us. We also had to be super careful since it was a parody of an existing song, to tweak it enough that we weren’t going to get sued by Capitol Records. :)
It was really important to me and the rest of the girls that we kept this fun and goofy. We wanted to celebrate all the geeky things we were into, but not alienate the geeky girls that would be watching. We didn’t want it to be another vid of a chick licking a PSP, nor did we want it to completely copycat Katy’s video. PLUS, Milynn and Rileah had never sung before while Clare had recorded two prior albums, and Clare had never danced a day in her life while Milynn used to dance professionally! I assured them all I was mediocre at both and it would all smooth out ;)
We recorded the song in a single night and then left it to the professionals to add in the gamer sound effects while we focused on the dance portion and inventorying the many, MANY games/toys/dvds/comics/action figures we had between the four of us. Dave came up with the idea of having Seth being on dates as a story to kind of frame the video and song itself, turning it into a ‘Thriller’-like experience that I absolutely loved. Sadly, the footage ended up on the cutting room floor for the first release of the video, but we have plans to release the FULL cut with the extra bits in a few weeks. I can’t wait, mostly because some girlfriends of mine Laura Catalina Ortiz and Mikaela Hoover are *hysterical* in it. I admit, I balked a bit at the idea of the American Beauty shots with the various geeky things falling on us, no matter how pretty they looked. What saved it was that the entire idea of the video was going to be a parody, including those shots. Plus, if you’re going to be half-naked on top of comics, then by god we were going to do it RIGHT.
We called in favor after favor. Panavision Studios let us shoot on their lot, letting us have so much more space than we would’ve otherwise. Borrowing camera equipment. Everyone working for friend rates, we couldn’t have done it without everyone involved pitching in! Break.com was amazing, giving us with the budget we needed to be able to get some of the awesome-cool overhead shots you see in the video and get the visual effects post-production the entire video needed.
And the cameos. Oh my GOD, the cameos. It went something like this:
Clare: “Oh, hey, Seth said Katee Sackhoff was down to do a cameo in the vid if we want.”
BSG Fan-Me: “Holy @^$#^squeeOMG!!!1!!”
A week later…..:
Clare: “Awesome! Stan Lee is going to cameo as well!”
Me: [Brain shutdown]
We still had no scope of the amount of people that we had pulled together on this project until I pulled onto set early Sunday morning to see this:
…and pulled around to see a bonafide crew setting up! My first reaction was just: “Wow, all these people are here for US?!”
I then step on set to see Seth already shooting his rap portion of the video standing in between two Storm Troopers from the 501st Legion and my brain exploded once more. The rest of the day (all 14 hours of it) passed by in a geekgasm-inducing blur with more comics than a 10 year old could ever dream of, a Cheer Bear on Clare’s crotch and this conversation:
501st Legionnaire Lawrence: “Hey, so you’re cosplaying as Han Solo?”
Me: “Yeah, but I don’t have a gun to go along with it, sadly.”
501st LL: “Do you want a blaster? It’s one of the actual ones from the film.”
Me: “OMFG YES!!!”
501st LL: “We have a holster, too, I mean, it’s really a holster for Luke Skywalker, but…”
Me: “DON’T CARE!! AWESOME!”
So that blaster I’m holding in this picture:
is as close to the real deal as anyone’s going to get!!
There are just so, SO many people to thank on this one.
Dave Yarovesky, our amazingly awesome director, Chris Z and Shawn Patterson for the song mixing, Ben Wolff for the choreography and AMAZING patience with girls who hadn’t danced in quite some time ;) Mike Sutter, our on set photographer for making us look good, and Ryan over at Golden Apple Comics for letting us borrow those kick ass Iron Man and Terminator busts!!
And of course, Break.com for streaming the video for us!! It wouldn’t looked nearly as cool without their help.