Drake's "Miss Me" video is the third project between the rapper and director Anthony Mandler (Jay-Z, Rihanna, Mary J. Blige), following their work together on the Toronto star's "Over" and "Find Your Love."
According to Mandler, he and Drake are establishing an aesthetic via their collaborations. Mandler said that "Over" was about re-establishing Drake visually and "Find Your Love" was intended to make Drake the lead in an anti-love story.
With "Miss Me," however, the director said the video was a particular challenge because co-star Lil Wayne's footage was shot prior to Mandler coming onboard.
"It wasn't shot the way I would have shot it," Mandler explained to MTV News. "So I had to come up with a world where I had ultimate control. I think with Drake, we're always looking for overarching themes. We're always looking for bigger themes to hang our hat on. With 'Miss Me,' what was interesting to me was not the idea of 'miss me because Wayne was gong to jail.' Because it was deeper than that. It was the attainability verses the unattainability. And how stars and people who are public figures are expected to sit on a platform and be grabbed and watched and photographed and controlled.
"The idea for me was, what happens if it's not that clear," he added.
The director said he incorporated a set where everything was slightly off. The set was built with a converging ceiling, in order to appear smaller. The lead actress in the video was never fully shown. The Young Money star appears but then quickly disappears.
"Everything is a click off," Mandler explained.
"All these unrelated scenarios are related by a textual theme and trying to play that into that, rather than some straight narrative, because we didn't have control ... 'cause we didn't have Wayne," he said.
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