PopWrap: How did you team up with Britney?
Chris Marrs Piliero: She hit me up and asked me to put together a concept for the song. Simple as that. Having been a fan for a while, I was stoked to get the call since I’ve always thought she was one of the cooler pop artists.
PW: Where did the idea for this video come from?
Chris: The song is really fun, really upbeat with lots of sexual undertones -- but the key lyric for me was “be a little inappropriate.” That stood out but I didn't want to make a video that was all about sexual inappropriateness – that wasn't the vibe that either of us wanted. We were on the same page about exploring fun ways for her to be inappropriate. She’s Britney Spears – how would you react if you asked for an autograph and she grabbed your ass?!?
PW: Were you worried that this might feel like "ugh, another paparazzi blasting video?
Chris: No. I've seen all of her videos and really wanted to pull what I loved about Britney from those, but give it something fresh. One thing that stood out to me was all her references to the paparazzi were always more of a statement than an action. She’d never embraced the opportunity to lash out, fight back. I thought this was the perfect chance to be tongue in cheek but also get her to say “f*** off!”
PW: Literally! Was there any pushback from her or her camp about the F-bombs?
Chris: I wrote the beginning not knowing if she’d be down to do it, but I was stoked at how game she was. Being a fan, I've seen her on “How I Met Your Mother" and “Saturday Night Live” – I feel like no video has really taken advantage of her comedic timing. Even when her videos have a narrative, they never embraced that aspect of her. She never had a music video where she could show her acting chops and have fun with comedy while being super badass. That was my goal from day one: I wanted her to be funny, badass and super cool.
PW: There have been lots of rumors about how Britney is just being propped up by her team and pointed at the stage. As someone who has worked with her, how much truth is there to that?
Chris: Let me tell you, all of that is bulls***. Every artist has management, that’s their job. It's what they’re paid for. I work with the artist. Your question goes along perfectly with the whole concept of the video and that press conference – it’s a ridiculous, exaggerated rumor about her life and career. I met with her, talked with her, went over the concept with her. It was extremely collaborative. She suggested alternatives and tweaked other things. As much as the management is there, this was a concept that Britney really dug. She was a big part of the decision-making process.
PW: Lastly, the video features a marquee for "Crossroads 2: Cross Harder." I love that, where did it come from?
Chris: I needed a movie title for the marquee and thought that would be perfect. It’s a fun Easter egg for fans. Plus, “Die Hard 2: Die Harder” is the most ridiculously awesome way to title a sequel. It just felt like the right thing to do. When Britney saw it, she loved it.