It’s probably fair to say the music video isn’t high on the list of priorities when it comes to dance music – the vast majority have none, many are almost an afterthought for promo purposes, some simply consist of a bunch of live footage. Yet occasionally there is a track which takes on a music video as a high concept and slightly surreal piece of art. One such example of the latter is Fatboy Slim‘s 2001 single ‘Weapon Of Choice’, and to celebrate the 20th anniversary, the video has now been given a 4K remaster.
To say the video was slightly surreal is an understatement. Firstly, Fatboy Slim, real name Norman Cook, had become such a big name by the turn of the millennium he managed to secure some serious names. Taking on directing duties was Spike Jonze, who’d just made a major name for himself in Hollywood with his 1999 film Being John Malkovich, and had a wealth of experience directing music videos for the likes of The Beastie Boys, Sonic Youth, Bjork, and Daft Punk throughout the 90s. But perhaps even more impressive was the actor at the centrepiece of the video, Academy Award winning Christopher Walken. The role came to be as Walken, who originally trained as a dancer in musical theatre, asked Jonze to film his dancing, who in turn suggested he appear in the ‘Weapon Of Choice’ video. The shoot took place at the Los Angeles Marriot Hotel, and while the shot of Walken diving over the lobby balcony was performed by a stuntman, the man himself was suspended from a large rig for the shots in which he flies around. Norman Cook himself was also scheduled to appear as a cameo, but was unable to as his wife was giving birth the weekend of the shoot, yet he does kind of still appear in a “blink and you’ll miss it moment” – see if you can spot it.
Originally shot on 35mm film, the 4k version of ‘Weapon Of Choice’ has been painstakingly restored from the original print, and is available to watch in all its glory below. Fatboy Slim is also taking on a UK arena tour later in 2021, with tickets available here.
Image credit: press