It took Nick DeMoura just three weeks to orchestrate 16 music videos for Justin Bieber’s Changes album. Collectively referred to as Changes: The Movement, the entire collection explores various styles of dance through intricate choreography and storylines. That’s what DeMoura, an award-winning Broadway dancer, does best. He previously collaborated with Bieber for the 2012-2013 Believe world tour, was production designer for the Purpose tour in 2015, and has also worked with other artists like Ariana Grande and Carly Rae Jepsen.
After meeting with Bieber’s manager, Scooter Braun, just before Christmas, DeMoura was given the task and worked diligently to make it happen, consulting Bieber to trade ideas. The videos have rolled out on Bieber’s YouTube page for the past month. Today (April 8), the project culminates in the release of “Yummy” — a much different version than the original clip that dropped in January — and DeMoura can finally get some shut-eye.
“I didn’t sleep,” he told MTV News over the phone. “The night I would finish a video, I would get the rehearsal footage for tomorrow's shoot and I would go home and just watch it. Then, on the drive to set in the morning, I’d watch it again to prepare.”
“It wasn’t your typical week of prep, location scouting, shooting, then having a week to edit,” he continued. “My team knew what we were doing — just hitting the ground running and capturing as much as we could.”
DeMoura’s videos showcase a new side of the romantic music of Changes that makes even more sense when given the context as to how these videos came about. Below, DeMoura breaks down how each Changes: The Movement video came about and what inspired them.
“All Around Me”
We came up with the idea of the male lead wanting someone all around him but also forcing someone all around you. The walls were choreographed and the people moving them were dancers who knew their counts and their placements.
It was inspired by contemporary choreography. We went to go scout at all of these theater locations two days before shooting and when we got the particular one in the video, I got inspired by 1917 and Birdman. It’s a love story, but in a theater rehearsal setting.
“Come Around Me”
I got inspired by a Purge aesthetic and showing people breaking into a warehouse. I just wanted everyone to feel camaraderie, like we’re all hanging out with friends.
“Intentions” (ft. Quavo)
I love the song saying, "Picture perfect. You don't need no filter." That's why at the very beginning, the girls are trying to take a photo on Snapchat with a filter and the guys come up and delete the filter. They're in this really cool art space that is meant to take photos.
"Yummy" (Summer Walker Remix)
It came about super last minute. We were contemplating whether to do one or not since it already had a music video to it. We put it together within just 48 hours. I had to call choreographer Sienna Lau and ask if her and her crew could put something together in two days and shoot it. We had no more money left in the budget so I had to call in a favor from the company that does the video walls for my tours. They built me an entire LED room as a favor.
This was inspired by Toy Story 2, showing misfit puppets who don’t get used in this theater show. When the theater locks up and the lights go out, it’s like that toy store moment when they can have their moment in the theater and then run and sneak around. We used animation style dance, where performers do robotics and animate their bodies like toys.
“Forever” (ft. Post Malone and Clever)
I was inspired by Entrapment, where the main characters have to break into a place and have to move around a bunch of lasers.
“Running Over” (ft. Lil Dicky)
I was thinking about cars running over for this one and reached out to West Coast Customs to do a shoot at their garage. It was cool to use their cars that they just built and shoot around that. Very Greased Lightning.
“Take It Out On Me”
I thought about fighting for this. I’m really good friends with the Kinjas, who are known online for their Ninja-style dancing. I wanted the aesthetic of the Matrix scene where Neo fights Morpheus for the first time. That was tough because we couldn’t find a dojo, so we actually built that one in less than 24 hours.
“Second Emotion” (ft. Travis Scott)
The song is one of the longer tracks on the album, so we wanted the video to portray the same thing. I wanted a gritty parking structure. We took all the lights out of it and put our own strobe lights in there just so that it could be really crazy. Johnny "J-Blaze" Erasme, the choreographer, has been dancing for Justin for a while. I just wanted to give him his opportunity just to show what he could do and crush it.
“Get Me” (ft. Kehlani)
While I was on location scouting for the “Come Around Me” video, the same area has this basement with cells so that we could shoot there as well. I based the concept on that area.
I pictured myself exactly how I made the video, that moment when we’ve all felt like: You invite that person over and you’re waiting for them and they say 20 minutes, but it takes longer. That feeling of excitement and nervousness. I wanted a really cool loft so we could have those drone shots of the perspective of looking into the situation. We shot those drone shots in five minutes because we were over time.
That was a tough day. That was four hours in a harness, flying while directing. I just wanted to show a physical version of how your body can tumble through all these emotions changes in your life. We change. After every five years, we have a really big shift in our minds about who we want to be. I was just trying to portray that, especially when my body splits into three and I look at each one of them, and I'm like, "Which direction should I go? Who should I be? What version of me do you want?"
Keone and Mari Madrid, the couple in the video, are actual choreographers and they're married. I knew I wanted to use them and this song just made sense because they had just gotten married and had a baby and the song’s lyrics include, "We've got the rest of our lives." I just felt like this was the video for them to be a part of with me.They were in New York working on a Broadway show, so we hired a team there with a director to shoot with them in Central Park. They pulled it off on a day that they were off from their show rehearsals.
“That’s What Love Is”
I wanted to show Justin and his marriage right now, like what love is to a couple in different rooms of their house. In the kitchen, they're cleaning together. At the dining room table, they're putting plates down and getting ready for dinner. In the bathroom, she's helping him with his tie. I wanted it all to feel very emotional and passionate.
"At Least For Now"
I definitely saw this song as a cold, winter-like situation, so we spent two weeks looking for a location — luckily, it was one of the last videos. You see us dancing on a helicopter pad that originally didn’t have snow on it. We actually had to shovel all of the snow from the mountain on to it. It was a small crew of 10 people and it took a little over two hours.