chase jarvis RAW: making pokemon with the presidents [video]

[note: this is behind the scenes – the finished vid is below…]

Ever since I was a kid I’ve envisioned shooting videos the old way…the “practical” way where the moves and gimmicks, the set changes and the moving walls happen in camera, in real time, and real space, as opposed to the numerous luxuries we have nowadays in post production. In short, the opportunity to live out that vision from when I was a kid is precisely why I was jumped at the opportunity to collaborate with my pals in the triple-platinum band The Presidents of The United States of America (Lump, Kitty, Peaches, Dune Buggy) on a music video for…check this out: Pokemon. It was a complete blast. Loved every minute of it.

And, it’s all practical, baby–and phew is that hard. Learned a ton through the process…not just about the cute little Pokemon characters, but about the amazing challenges working almost entirely in camera. And the choreography? Whoa. That’s HARD too, but it’s a wonderful challenge and something I think every filmmaker should play with at some point.

For the record, we shot it all at 4k on the RED, and had a lean crew of about 20 to pull this off. Huge props to the cast and crew–especially Loren and the art department who stepped up big to make this happen.

So enjoy the latest chase jarvis RAW above. We did our best to share all the moving parts, from concept to wrap. Lemme know how we did. And of course, the final video is below.

[and lastly, BTW…don’t forget to join us LIVE tomorrow on Wednesday April 27 – we’re shooting LIVE with the band We Are Augustines. Anyone can tune in, details are here ]

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Drew says:

Wow, how many takes?

I thought this was rather fun and charming Chase. Fantastic job!

Aaron says:

Catching up on your posts here so I know I’m late on this comment. Regardless, just wanted to say I enjoyed this a lot and thought the idea and execution were spot on.

One of your best!

Tim Arch says:

Great work Chase – I know how hard it is to choreograph all that behind the camera movement! Here’s my attempt at a one shot music video from a few years ago – I pushed and pushed for the entire video to be one shot, but none of us could come up with a solution for what to do with the bridge. Still, plenty fun trying to work out all the sneaking around behind camera to make it happen –

Great stuff Chase…great stuff!

colin says:

sweet vid and great bts. Love the creativity of doing everything in the camera. Its hard work but worth it.

Tyler says:

Awesome Chase!

The Presidents were actually the first large band I ever got a photo shoot with way back when I was the spry old age of 16.

manoj bharti says:

Execution is superb,,,,,What is more exciting & crative for me how you pull out of that kind of idea….?any kind of stydy?,thinking?,what chase what just tel me if got time pls tell,,!

DanielKphoto says:

Amazing, one little question though, how many takes did this take? And the entire video is one cut right?

Chase Jarvis says:

we probably had 15 takes to get it right. and we actually had three cuts in there because in the end, the space we built the set in could not accommodate the full set of camera moves …

c.d.embrey says:

Nothing new under the sun. Hitchcock’s “Rope” invented this technique in 1948. Always interesting to see a new take on something old.

A dramatic film with 20 minuets between cuts. Available from Amazon

That was pretty tight. Congrats!

fas says:

Woooow this was awesome. Amazing insight.

James Green says:

absolutely nuts! Soooo much work involved in that. Great job!

jake scott says:

corny, funny, and amazing

Simple Yet Very Creative!
Awesome Job Chase!

Aldrin says:

l love the behind the scene video, it show you what it take to pull this off, and at the same time having! Cool

bimal nair says:

This is hillarious! Huge fun man! The short “behind the scenes” shows the entire footage in a simple ‘got it done’ mode, but clearly tells the Himalayan efforts taken to plan this superb shoot and get it executed as well.
Another rocking team work! Cheers to the masters! :)

NOT says:

What.. you can make a cool video of any kind of crap these days.. The video is neat! the music – WTF?!

I cannot believe I just watched a video about pokemon… Very well done Chase + Crew!

Jay Huron says:

Very cool. Thanks for the behind the scenes!

Nice man…definitely different and unique. 42000 watts of light makes me nervous!!!

Alvin Toro says:

1 Take? Really??? That was awesome! Love the song, love the video. Well done!

Bob Gundu says:

Michel Gondry would have been proud!

Ray says:

Man, now I’m going to have that song going around in my head all night. Great job, Chase & co.!

Abhi says:

Chase,Do you ever sleep and rest at all? Never heard of that.

You are:

1. Enjoying/Travelling or….

2. Working. 3. Working. 4. Working.

annnnnnnd Working :)


CallumW says:

Cool – can you say what the budget was for shooting it this way?


Jon Spanos says:

That is one of the worst songs I’ve heard recently. I’d rather listen to Rebecca Black. Seriously.

Kathleen says:

Guess what we are all humming while homework is being done.

“For the record, we shot it all at 4k on the RED”

I want one.

Amazing team work on the whole video.

Andrew MacDonald says:

That was quite honestly one of the coolest thing I’ve ever seen.

Andre Knudsen says:

Wicked cool man !!!

Paul S says:

I think it was great how the video just seamlessly transitioned from scene to scene. Thanks for sharing Chase.

Ivonne says:

Fun project! :D Loved the making of the video, all classic, just like I imagined they made tv when I was little.

Mathieu Wauters says:

Great vid Chase! The soundtrack’s got a catchy tune as well.

Gabriel says:

I love that you share all this behind the scenes stuff. It’s very cool to see how it’s done, and it shows the effort needed to make this stuff succeed. Awesome!

Ahmad says:


Mike Padua says:

The Presidents of the United States of America are such a solidly hard-rocking band. Listening to their all their past music, it holds up so well today because it’s so catchy and concise. Great job on this video!

Leo says:

Love these behind the scenes videos. Must’ve been awesome. Great to see done all in camera too!

jethro says:

bd All thumbs way up bd :D

That’s awesome as always! Love seeing behind the scenes. Was it a number of takes and stitched together or was it all done in one take?

Chase says:

we ended up doing it in 3 takes, but primarily because the space we rented was not large enough to accomodate the layout required of the set. we had to recompose with the dolly for one transition. the cuts are at the two whip pans between verses. see if you can catch em (all ;)

I like seeing all these “1 take” productions, great job!

luis says:

damn i love it!

mel haynes says:

awesome BTS. Chase. Was this done in all one take? Wow the planning and rehearsing to get this done paid off in the end. The vision of this video is really great as well. Props to all involved.

TimE says:

So cool. thanks for sharing. My kids will love this, the Pokemon freaks that they are.

Just Awesome and really fun!

Bart says:

Awesome idea! Proves that you don’t need extensive editing afterwards.

David Johnson says:

Very cool, my kids are gonna get a kick outa this. One Q: How the heck does he remember all the lyrics? :-)

Chase says:

for one: chris ballew is amazing. a true professional with endless talent. he remembered 99% of the lyrics and, for two: we had a teleprompter working for him for that 1% that was extra tough.

Camden says:

I love pokemon and BTS. Being a child of the 90s makes this that much more amazing. Too bad all the pokemon are new and not the cool original ones. Chase, great project once again.

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