Friday, March 16, 2012

Keith Urban's "For You"

Well here it is, in all its explosive promotional glory: Keith Urban's "For You", which I had the privilege to color corrected last month at Bandito Brothers with DP Shane Hurlbut and director Scott Waugh. The video features some great practical explosion effects, a fantastic performance by Keith (and yes I'll admit, I'm a fan), some really great visuals out in the California desert, and some selected clips from the film "Act of Valor" (some of which you can't see in the theater...).

The project was shot on multiple formats including Arri Alexa, Canon C300, and the Canon 5D Mk II to name a few. Balancing multiple formats was a bit tricky at first, but eventually they all fell in to line (multiple formats was a staple on the film Act of Valor as well, so the music video stayed true to form and gave its colorist a bit to sweat over!). The Alexa especially shone beautifully as it captured a vast amount of shadow and highlight detail that I pulled directly from the Log-C material to really enhance the sky, the desert, and most importantly, Keith himself. Shane and Scott were looking for a punchy warm look so we pushed the contrast to the edge of blowing out, and really focused on working the highlights as much as we could to make everything feel really vibrant and sunlit (even when it wasn't, ahh daytime exteriors...). Obviously talent is important in a project like this, and Keith's performance is really strong, so we needed to make sure that he looked as good as he sounded, and the Alexa gave us amazing flexibility to reshape lighting across his face when we needed to, and even add a light glow to the highlights on his skin for an extra pop when the weather wasn't behaving.

The footage speaks for itself, and the video has been climbing the CMT charts (currently at 12 at only week 2!, we'll see how high it can go). All in all, really proud of this piece; great song, great concept, great cinematography, great performance; not even a crazy hypercritical colorist could mess that up.