Music Videos That Cost More Than You and Your Families’ Lives Combined

The title says it all. I was looking for something to write about today and I ended up with a million other things to compare. The superlatives Most and Best can be applied to any godamn thing here on earth and that’s tough for anyone making a sensible list of things to speak about. But I try to veer away from another topic as this blog really doesn’t talk much about other things than music — which we are going to do today. To be quite honest though, I’m starting to rethink the coverage of this blog. Make it a bit more extensive perhaps. I’m liking it here much.

I haven’t watched Mtv in a long time. When I say a long time, I mean a hefty amount of months and days combined. The thing about it is, nothing much has changed since then. The results still come out the same, a bandshot, a crane shot with cars stuck in traffic — you know the drill. The development of softwares have grown in the blink of an eye, and the margin goes down as our new batch of directors from the independent and underground scene are being hired for a measly but respect-provoking price as we speak. Videos sprouting out of nowhere as you can see on Youtube, have some that are done using a handycam. This is because as we know, the advent of digital video production has massively increased its accessibility to almost anyone out there with newer softwares and heavily improved gadgets that are now more affordable. Couple it up with an idea, even one that’s been done a million times over, and you have a music video.

What remains to make certain music videos really expensive apparently are the cost of the production itself, the talent fees that range from a couple of ten thousand bucks to a hundred, and millions in the case of Blackstreet’s music video that had Janet Jackson appearing in it. In the name of “art,” you can pretty much cut up pieces of paper, attach barbecue sticks onto it and make them move. All you need to do is get your buddy’s video camera and let post production do the talking. Its like recording something on a low quality microphone and saying, “Dude, it’s really supposed to sound like, really low-fi”.

Because of that, the list of the most expensive music videos ever made have surprisingly not changed. And no, the cause of this isn’t the fact that we haven’t got the updated list since the 90’s. In fact, the most recent addition to the million-dollar music videos in this era spring from 2006. As of late, I haven’t heard much about one costing more than what, $7,000,000.

And for the first time in this blog, I am going to use some sort of ranking, once and for all. According to most of the lists I’ve gathered, wikipedia mostly, Mariah Carey’s Heartbreaker is on the fifth spot, with $2,500,000 for the cost of production. I’m guessing the talent fees might already have to be included in this, but the video didn’t really star anyone that notable.

Next up is Puff Daddy’s “Victory” directed by Marcus Nispel.

with a whopping $2,700,000+ for cost of production. Well that’s Puff Daddy in 1998 for ya.

Third up is Madonna’s Bedtime Story by Mark Romanek.

Madonna’s impeccable taste in directors is enough to flush this guy with superlatives. Let alone he has worked with David Bowie on his song, “Jump They Say” back in 1993.

On the sophomore list is another Madonna video by Traktor. The tracktor group of filmmakers is a breath of fresh air in the music video making industry. I’d like to find out more about these guys. Here is a clip of “Die Another Day” from 2002.

And still, the undisputed King AND Queen of the most expensive video up to date, Michael and Janet Jackson for their music video, “Scream”, directed by Mark Romanek in 1995, with an obscene amount of $7,000,000.

~ by eltentwelve on April 18, 2008.

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