Nigel Dick had the right attitude for someone gearing up to do a Pussycat Dolls video: It ain't high art.
"It's a wonderful mess," the director laughed. "A photographic [rendition of] the life of the Pussycat Dolls: traveling around, getting ready for gigs, being on the tour bus, doing a photo session, waking up in a motel, talking to the boyfriend on the phone, soundchecking. It's informal but beautiful. It's not rock and roll; it's the urban-pop world. I don't think Francis Ford Coppola is going to be [losing] sleep."
Okay, so "The Godfather" it isn't, but the video for "Stickwitu" still manages to be high-fashion and low-brow, glamorous and, um, gritty at the same time. It's the second clip from the Pussycats' pop-tastic debut, PCD, which bowed at #5 on the Billboard albums chart when it was released last month (see "Pussycat Dolls: The New Spice Girls?"). As such — and given the fact that it follows on the heels of PCD's club smash "Don't Cha" — Dick was feeling pressure to deliver.
"There's always pressure on the set, and I never consciously say to myself that it doesn't matter. The videos are always important," he said. "Plus, this video establishes the way they want to be seen from now on. But that's the way it's always been for me. I've been very lucky in my career to do videos for people that are very crucial in artist's careers."
He's not kidding: Name a chart-topping pop group from the past decade, and there's a good chance Dick's done a video for them. From the Backstreet Boys and 'NSYNC to Jessica Simpson and Britney Spears, he's helmed mega-successful videos for the biggest and best pop acts on the planet, which can only mean good things for PCD, right?
"I mean, it's all so fickle," he said of the pop world. "Who really knows? When I worked with Britney, she was 16 years old. All the girls in the Pussycat Dolls are in their 20s, so they're a bit more mature. And there's a different dynamic, because there are six of them instead of one.
"It's always a bit different, but also sort of the same. Like, when I was doing Backstreet Boys videos, people would ask me what it was like working with a boy band. And I told them it's just like working with the Beatles or the Supremes or whomever. I don't think there's any difference. You can like Paul or George or Ringo, but I think people of a certain age will be discussing whether it's [Pussycat Dolls] Carmit or Ashley or Nicole."
The "Stickwitu" video was shot over two days in a variety of Los Angeles locales, including the Orpheum Theatre, the same place where Good Charlotte shot their ain't-we-serious "We Believe" video (see "Good Charlotte Take Off The Hamburger Suits, Decry Human Suffering In New Clip") though Dick said that the Pussycats were far from somber during their shoot.
"There's a moment in the video where they each dance, because we wanted something to be a bit uptempo from the single, which is a slow groove. And each girl picked their own music, so it was a little contest between each of them," he said. "They were trying to outdo each other, trying to pump each other up. It was all modern dance mixes. But don't ask me what songs they chose. They each made it abundantly clear that I was no longer in my 20s, because all the music was all quite strange to me. There were no classic-rock numbers."