Lady Gaga’s “911” video is getting the virtual reality experience from CEEK VR. The singer/songwriter is teaming with the virtual reality company to provide a behind-the-scenes look on the set of “911″ as she celebrates her No. 1 album “Chromatica” a year after its release.
The short film accompanied the third single off the album, and directed by Tarsem Singh, with visuals eerily reminiscent of his earlier feature film, “The Cell,” starring Jennifer Lopez. “She had seen the film,” Singh tells Variety.
Singh explains he and Gaga were discussing ideas for the video. Rather than replicate that exact visual, Singh says, “I told her, ‘I know you like that film but let’s go the opposite direction. Let’s put you in red, and have white sand dunes.’ So, we did that.”
The video was shot in Valencia, Calif. Singh was adamant that white dunes be seen to make Gaga’s bold and vibrant colors stand out. The sand where they shot was brown, but he “corrected” that in post-production. “The sand was brown and it didn’t feel right because we wanted a sorbet feel. She needed to pop in those colors.”
It begins with the “Chromatica II” transition showing Gaga covered in a blindfold, lying in a desert sandpit, with a man on horseback in the distance. Gaga wakes up and finds herself surrounded by strange imagery, included a woman who resembles Santa Muerte — a Mexican deity personifying death to safely carry those to the afterlife. As the imagery gets stranger, the video delivers a twist. As it turns out, Gaga’s character is nearly killed in a car accident.
“She will exhaust herself and give you everything you want,” Singh said of the experience. “It’s full-on or fuck off.” In shooting that twist, Singh had two cameras in place. “I told the crew to not make a sound because I wanted to capture every sound she made. She went at it and had a solid meltdown and we had that in one take. I told her to trust me. We got it and that was that.”
When the video for the single was released, Gaga said, “This short film is very personal to me, my experience with mental health and the way reality and dreams can interconnect to form heroes within us and all around us.”
Of the new 360 VR experience, Singh says he hopes people embrace the technology displayed in this behind-the-scenes experience of “911.”
The 360 VR experience will be exclusively available on www.ceek.com and on the CEEK VR App, which is available for download on iOS, Android, Facebook Oculus, HTC, etc. It can also be viewed through CEEK’s mobile Virtual Reality headset.