Last we heard from scifi/horror writer Stephenie Meyer, author of The Host, she was on Bummer Watch after a partial draft of Midnight Sun leaked, and the author subsequently put the Twilight companion on "indefinite hold." Amid her doldrums, she's been working on a melancholy music video for the Southern California rock/emo band Jack's Mannequin. Who? Why? It seems Meyer-who's never directed before-gave the band a shout-out or two on her site. And Jack's Mannequin frontman Andrew McMahon told us the whole story. Said McMahon:
This is an idea I hashed out in conversation with my marketing person. We really went through a whole brainstorm: What are some creative interesting ways we can approach doing this video [for "The Resolution"] as an experiment of some sort?
The record company, meanwhile, likely sensed an awesome side-effect of said experiment: thousands of potential pubescent lady-fans. Adds McMahon: "Stephanie's interpretation was a relationship metaphor kind of thing." Eureka! The gist of her creation, shot in Ventura, California: McMahon plays the piano on the back of a vintage pick-up truck; then he's walking out of a beach house with the tide rising and rising until he gives up and goes for a swim…and meets up with a mermaid. Explained McMahon:
Our goal with the video is ‘Let's not go literal.' I'd rather just make a music video than try to make some crazy statement, you know. We're still in the editing process.
The song touches on McMahon's much-publicized battle with leukemia, or as he puts it, "Running from dealing with something and reconciling [with it]." (He's since beaten the affliction.) Meyer fans may be a bit disappointed, though:
There are no vampires in it! It's cinematic and has dark qualities to it. The most whimsical element in it is our mermaid. That was handled in a Tim Burton-esque kind of way.
So how does an inexperienced director shoot a video? McMahon said:
Stephanie had been in the process of editing her movie when we hooked up. [On set] she had ideas of where to place things and how the visual should play out. Signing off on shots. This was kind of an effort with her and a director of photography named Noble Jones [3 Doors Down, Sevendust, Sloan].… I took a lot of my direction from Noble in the sense that it was a more of positioning and placement.
And in case you were wondering: He's currently on page 200 of Twilight right now. But does he like it? "I tend to appreciate things that can be digested by the masses." Mannequin's second album, The Glass Passenger, drops Sept. 30.