Taken off Stormzy's Mercury Prize nominated album, the inspirational single is accompanied by a powerful new film starring 350 of his biggest fans. NEZ's vision for the all black and white film was to capture the spirit of a community and to feature people from all ethnicities and backgrounds as a true portrait of Britain.
The music video closes with Stormzy, surrounded by fans and the local community taking a moment of silence to pay respect to the victims of the Grenfell Tower tragedy.
MNEK's "Paradise" video explores beauty, pain, and makes a powerful statement about police brutality.
Ciaran Lyons, director: "I think the themes of MNEK’s track will resonate with a lot of people. What grabbed me was the underlying idea of the different responses elicited by the chaos of the modern world - the desire to escape from the real world into a fantasy paradise vs the possibility of standing strong and separate from all the madness and cruelty, in the hope of preserving something better. It’s a theme reminiscent of those who “carry the fire” in The Road.
The intention with the video was to echo these themes, while maintaining the ambiguity of the lyrics. Escaping, or standing apart can be seen either as an act of strength and heroism, or callousness and cowardice. So we have this beautiful human walking through a fantasy landscape made from symbols of growth and decay, never stopping, never getting involved, but coming out the other end still intact, and still beautiful."
A sweet story about a girl and a huge hideous, yet lovable monster.
Richard Paris Wilson, director: "When I travelled to Iceland in the beginning of this year I just fell in love with the place. It's just so enchanted and raw; there are myths and stories bleeding out of the mountains and moss fields. So when I got home I was just constantly looking for the right job to take me back. When I heard 'Never Forget You', I hoped that it would be the perfect fit. To me, the song felt like a story about love, but not a typical love story. There was no romance - it's more about the love you have for a pet or imaginary friend, and how deep that might be if they lived forever. So I wrote this very simple story about a little girl and her life with a monster, who nobody else ever met.
MNEK, Zara Larsson, rumble and the commissioner Ailsa Robertson were so great in supporting it. And our producer Stephanie Paeplow managed to find the most amazing fixer, Unnar Helgi Danielsson, who just unlocked the door to Iceland. The crew were absolutely incredible - I wish I could fly them everywhere (and I will try). A special mention goes to Arni, our DOP, who was great.
Finally, I should definitely mention Jen Cardno - the monster creator, and Chris Fleming, who wore the suit. They were both heroes. I'll never forget running through Luton Airport with them as we held onto various parts of the Monster costume - we definitely got some odd looks there."
I'm personally fond for the toilet humor detour — how can you when the song's refrain asks if you can fuck to this shit — but there's plenty of visual hooks as a camera dollies around MNEK and an ever-changing cast of characters.