Justin Bieber was inspired by a few action-packed flicks before gearing up for a wild ride in his “Hold On” music video.
Billboard’s current cover star discussed his inspirations in the new Vevo Footnotes clip that was released on Thursday (March 11). Bieber and “Hold On” video director Colin Tilley took notes from The Place Beyond the Pines, Good Time and Hell or High Water, where the living-on-the-edge protagonists from all three movies rob banks to provide for their loved ones. Even though Bieber did most of his own motorcycle stunts, the cinematographer pulled off their own dangerous mission by crashing through the bank window to get the shot of Bieber escaping his heist and ended up getting 14 stitches.
“Justin called me and said he wanted to do something action-packed with motorcycles, but also pull on the heart strings,” Tilley said of their phone call to conceptualize the video. He had a personal connection to the music video’s storyline about Bieber’s love interest, played by Dave actress Christine Ko, dealing with a cancer diagnosis. “My grandmother just got diagnosed with very bad cancer and only has so much longer to live. It’s been on my mind and affecting me heavy, so of course this storyline came up,” Tilley wrote in the Vevo Footnotes.
Ko, on the other hand, had her own kind of movie homework she completed before stepping into character. She watched romantic drama movies such as Blue Valentine, 50/50, and A Walk to Remember, which unpack complicated relationships where a loved one is terminally ill. “He emphasized how much he wanted to tell this story so people don’t give up hope no matter what difficulties life hands them. That really spoke to me,” she wrote in the Footnotes.
Watch the Vevo Footnotes video for “Hold On” below.