[artist id="510062"]Lil Wayne[/artist] may have gotten an unexpected extra day of freedom after a courthouse fire delayed his sentencing on weapons charges Tuesday (March 2), but the MC has prepared to cover his forthcoming jail term by preparing nearly 20 videos to air in his absence. The first of these clips is Young Money's "Roger That," which hit the Web on Monday. MTV News chatted with co-directors David Rousseau and Adam Rush about the graphic-novel-inspired, "Sin City"-influenced short, which only took a few minutes to imagine.
"Jeff Panzer, the executive producer for all of the Cash Money videos, sent me the 'Roger That' track to sit with for a couple hours — and it really was a couple of hours because I had to get an idea back to him pretty quickly," Rousseau told MTV News. "We started texting back and forth and the idea to use 'Sin City' popped into my head and I came up with the concept. I thought of 'Sin City' because it was so groundbreaking and I knew it'd be a great match, something different and edgy that people would remember. The idea was born in an hour."
Rousseau then called on co-director Adam Rush and the pair — who have worked together before on clips for Flo Rida, Pitbull and DJ Khaled — began to fashion an action plan.
"We discussed the concepts through style frames, which are mock-up images that show what the background would look like with Wayne, Nicki [Minaj] and Tyga," Rush explained. "When the artists came to set, they had already chosen their outfits and things, then we shot it all that day in Miami and the footage of them in front of the green screen was flown to Los Angeles where editors put together a rough cut of all the images. Then, after the rough cut was approved by the label, Universal, the film was shipped off to me so I could do the film's introductions, transitions, settings and background like the radar behind Tyga."
Fortunately, the Young Money camp understood the concept — because when filming in front of a green screen, artists must largely use their imaginations, since the scenery's images won't be created until post-production.
"Filming with them on the green screen and capturing their energy was great because they understood what we were trying to do," Rousseau said. "Green screen is hard sometimes because it takes a lot of imagination. We'll sometimes print out storyboards, which will have images close to what the screen will end up looking like to walk the artists through the idea. Nicki was great — I really enjoyed working with her. Tyga was great too. When artists are down to push the boundaries, that's awesome.
"On 'Roger That,' Nicki Minaj's delivery is almost comic book-like, and then Tyga and Wayne come in like they're rapping about fiction so the visual needed something out of the ordinary. The green screen was great because when you shoot on location, you're limited to what you see — but with green screen it's whatever you imagine, any scenario," Rousseau added.
As for Lil Wayne — who appears in the clip in a simple white T-shirt, sans any costume like Nicki's flight suit or Tyga's turn as an aviator — both directors say he's a natural.
"Wayne is Wayne — just put the camera [on him] and let him go," Rousseau said. "He's like Michael Jordan in the fourth quarter, just have to let him do his thing."