Although she hasn’t announced it with much fanfare, Hilary Duff has a new song hitting radio in a few weeks.
No, it’s not the much-discussed cover with her sister, Haylie, of Madonna’s “Material Girl,” the song that inspired the pair’s upcoming “Material Girls” movie (see “Duff Sisters Living Large In ’Material’ World” ). Hilary’s single will be a sneak peek at her upcoming album — which she’s quietly been recording in between tour dates.
“Play With Fire” — formerly called “Happy” — is a dancey techno tune for which the singer shot a video in Toronto last month with directing duo Alex and Martin (the White Stripes’ “Seven Nation Army,” U2’s “Vertigo”). Alex and Martin wanted the clip to look both “real and surreal,” incorporating a lot of fire, explosions, distortions and reflections, “like a house of mirrors in an amusement park,” according to their video treatment.
“For example, we could see a glass reflection close-up of Hilary vibrate and explode which then transitions to a completely different image behind her, then disintegrates into a new performing shot,” they wrote.
Just like the duo’s already-classic “Seven Nation Army” video, the trippy “Play With Fire” clip is designed so each frame is vital, and the images will rhythmically pump so the lights play up the appearance and disappearance of Hilary in the mirrors while explosions are timed to the music. Other visual tricks will include projected films of breaking glass and flames in the mirrors to create more layers.
“Play With Fire” is the first video that Hilary has shot for a song she has yet to complete, since the track and as-yet-untitled album are still in progress (the album’s due November 21, while the single hits radio August 21). She’s been recording with producer and songwriter Rhett Lawrence (Mariah Carey’s “Vision of Love,” Kelly Clarkson’s “Miss Independent”) while in Toronto, and writing with Kara DioGuardi, who co-wrote Duff hits such as “Fly” and “Come Clean,” according to her label rep.
In the meantime, Duff is still working on her clothing line, Stuff by Hilary Duff, and a new fragrance called With Love arrives next month. “My clothing line is for girls who are 7 to 14,” Duff told Self magazine for her July cover story, “but I have a line coming out for girls who are 15 to 20 and it’ll be stuff I’d wear.”
As for the scent she created with Elizabeth Arden, it has notes of mangosteen fruit, spice, cocobolo wood, amber milk and musk, generating an effervescent oriental feel. With Love will be carried in 1,600 department and specialty stores starting in mid-September.