There's an old Hollywood nugget that warns stars against working with animals and children. After enduring a disastrous day of filming his upcoming music video for "The Truth," [artist id="1941279"]Kris Allen[/artist] might suggest you avoid shooting in the desert too. Twelve days ago, the season-eight "American Idol" champ was forced to pull the plug on his latest shoot, thanks to extreme weather that turned the vast, dry California desert into a wet, sticky mess.
"Apparently, in the desert, when it starts raining the ground just turns into mush," Allen told MTV News on Monday night from the set, where production had resumed. That desert "mush" led to quicksand-like conditions that forced the crew to cut their losses and flee for safety.
"It started to monsoon, man! It was crazy. It was one of the biggest storms I've ever been in but it was almost kind of fun in a way. We were just standing outside, [but] I felt like we had just jumped in the pool," Allen said.
Nobody got hurt in the sudden storm, but a few (expensive) inanimate objects succumbed to the sinking earth. "Some of [the film trailers] got stuck. We had to leave a piano out here because they couldn't get it in time," Allen explained. "I'm sure it's ruined. ... We'll probably still use it though. Maybe it'll look cooler."
Perhaps a weathered piano might fit the moody music video's aesthetic, which Allen described as an abstract dream. (Turns out the piano survived, based on a picture Kris tweeted late Tuesday night.)
The first day of rained-out shooting wasn't a complete wash, though. Before Mother Nature made her unwelcome cameo, Train singer Pat Monahan finished his portion of the video — in 110-degree heat. (Pat co-wrote the song and warbles a few lines in the single.) The crew also managed to wrap a few setups with Kris.
"I was in the middle of the desert dragging this really heavy chest that is filled with sand," Allen described before joking, "[Then, Pat's] gonna pop out and sing the bridge."
Luckily Kris, who's currently on tour supporting the Barenaked Ladies in between a sprinkling of headlining dates, had a day off in Las Vegas. So Allen's team drove down from the Nevada desert into the California desert to resume taping the video. "It's freakin' hot, man!" Kris exclaimed. "The bad thing is you don't sweat, and so you don't really realize that maybe you should have some water. ... We're trying to keep hydrated and make sure no one's passin' out out here."
Despite the drama of rescheduling, the sizzling "Truth" set ran smoothly on Monday.
"We're moving quick; everything's getting done. We've [finished] some performance shots, just singing and playing the guitar," Allen told us after a few hours of shooting under the direction of noted cinematographer Aaron Platt. ("Live Like We're Dying" director Marco Puig was under consideration for "The Truth" the last time we spoke with Kris, but ultimately, the video took another direction.)
Fans can look forward to "random" imagery mixed in with performance footage, including a scene that finds the singer using a "magical orb" to get all aggro on a mirror. "Yeah, I have an orb," Allen boasted.
He also has a female co-star, model/actress Cindy Vela, although he didn't share any scenes with her. "It's not gonna be, like, us making out with each other or anything like that," Allen explained.
Abstract dream logic, a tortured couple, mysterious locations ... sounds a lot like the summer blockbuster "Inception," which Kris and his wife, Katy, actually caught the day his video shoot was canceled. "Don't be mad at me but ... apparently 30 minutes into the movie, I [was] pretty tired and I [fell] asleep," the exhausted singer said. But the irony of dreaming during "Inception" was not lost on Kris. Upon waking up, a disoriented Allen quipped, "I felt like Ellen Page for a second."
Fans will have to wait a little bit before they discover whether "The Truth" has the same dreamlike quality of Leonardo DiCaprio's buzzy hit. "I don't know how long the post-production stuff takes so hopefully [it'll debut] pretty soon. [Adding] a digital elephant, that could take awhile," Allen joked. "James Cameron is actually directing this video. It'll be 3-D, and it's costing $3 billion. Hope the song does well!"
He may have lost a piano in quicksand, but at least Kris Allen didn't lose his sense of humor.
Are you excited to see Kris' next video? Tell us in the comments!