Earlier this summer, an alumnus of AU had an idea to create a music video to Justin Timberlake’s hit song, “Can’t Stop the Feeling,” that would feature the faculty, staff, and student groups at AU. He kept directing the video in his head but couldn’t quite figure out how to get the job done.
Eventually, he shared the project with David Armstrong, the operations director at Covenant Productions, AU’s on-campus video production company. Armstrong decided that the video could be used as a tool to unify the university.
Armstrong handed the special project off to his student managers at Covenant Productions one week before the start of the semester. Planning began before the semester, and filming started once they were all on campus.
These managers included juniors Malik Davis and Mattea Johnson, and seniors Mirenty Rakotomalala and Isaac Wonderlin, who are all majoring in cinema and media arts.
The four students have been filming different groups across campus. Some of the filming locations have included the Anderson seal by Reardon, the campgrounds, and the International Plaza outside of Fine Arts. There have even been groups filmed dancing throughout the valley.
There are about 20 different AU groups shown throughout the video. It is almost an even split between student groups, faculty and staff. Every group has its own portion of the music video that they danced along to. Davis was in charge of creating a storyboard for the project, so he decided which shots were needed and how long each would last.
When it came to which groups were the most fun to work with, Johnson stated that “admissions kind of grabbed my heart, but [so did] cultural resources.” She explained that cultural resources was a fun group because they had a line dance mapped out that they had learned for the song. Another great group was the women’s volleyball team because they had a synchronized dance prepared. President Pistole also has a small cameo at the start of the video.
The students of Covenant Productions had a wonderful time creating the video. Rakotomalala said that her favorite part of this project was the gratitude they received.
“They were really polite about thanking us for getting them involved,” she said. “We were just as grateful for them being willing to participate because I know it’s really hard to be in front of the camera because you’re nervous.”
This year is the centennial celebration for AU and the video is one way the campus will celebrate the once-in-a-lifetime occasion. When asked how it felt to be a part of creating something for the celebration, Davis said “It makes me feel great, because now I have a cool story to tell my future children when I send them to Anderson.”
The students who were involved in the project were excited to be a part of it but are glad for its end so that they can share it with their peers. Johnson wants people to be happy they were included because that’s what the whole video is about: trying to include everyone and in a community bonding experience.
Even though there have been a few mishaps with scheduling, the Covenant Productions team is wrapping up their work on the project this week.
The video is planned to make its premiere very soon at a chapel service on campus. Once it has been shown there, it will be shared via social media.
Armstrong hopes that once it is published on social media, “something fun happens with it and it’s shared a lot. That would be a great thing.”