Sometimes a joke sounds funniest to the one telling it.
For example, when it came time for French-Canadian pop-punks Simple Plan to think up a clip for their new single, “Shut Up” – an ode to their many detractors – they decided the haters should be played by old, rich men and women.
“The song is about people who told us our band sucked or that we didn’t belong where we were. It was like telling those people to shut up,” singer Pierre Bouvier explained. “The old people are like the people who are telling us we suck, and we’re telling them to f– off.
“I don’t know,” he paused. “The whole thing was [drummer] Chuck [Comeau]’s idea.”
The clip, which follows the guys as they accidentally crash a swanky shindig, was shot over two days at a Los Angeles hotel that was selected, according to Bouvier, despite its shabby outward appearance.
“It was this really beat-up, crappy-ass hotel in Los Angeles, but it had a really nice ballroom,” he explained. “And then the other room we used for the video, where we play for our fans, was in the same hotel, a couple of stories up. It was just really cool looking, but also kind of gross.”
Bouvier himself misses out on nearly all the action in the clip as his bandmates stomp on tables, hit on the assembled masses of trophy wives and, in one truly epic scene, smash an ice sculpture. But he’s not mad. After all, he’s the lead singer.
And he’s the only guy in the band who actually gets to act in the video, in an improvised scene where Simple Plan’s roadie informs them that maybe they’ve shown up at the wrong party.
“Man, we did like three takes of that scene,” Bouvier laughed. “I wanted to do it again. I was like, ‘We should figure out something to do here,’ but they didn’t want anything scripted. It was also one of the last shots of the day and people wanted to go home, so we just shot it real quick. And now I watch it and I think, ‘Eh, it’s OK.’ ”
Now that they’re done terrorizing the rich and elderly, Simple Plan are turning their attention to a massive world tour. The band will be spending the next three months in the U.K., New Zealand, Australia and Japan before coming back to the U.S. in April to begin a super-secret co-headlining tour.
“I can’t tell you who we’re going to be touring with,” Bouvier said. “All I can say is that it’s going to be one of our biggest tours.”
And while they’re in the middle of said co-headlining tour, they’ll shoot a clip for the third single off Still Not Getting Any…, which Bouvier said would be the song “Crazy.”
“The next video is going to be a bit more artsy and cryptic. Less in your face,” he said. “Not mature, but not funny, either. The song is a bit more serious, so the video will be more beautiful. It will be more about the quality of the film rather than us just jumping around.”