Utada Hikaru‘s music is a rare and precious (Cubic U REFERENCE) thing, given that her record label restricts most of her music from appearing on global streaming services.
Even the interpretive dance-filled video for her latest single, “Forevermore,” the theme song of Gomen, Aishiteru (I’m Sorry, I Love You), is only available in “short version” form on YouTube — or as an iTunes purchase.
It’s frustrating as a fan living outside Japan, as you might also notice from the enraged comments on her YouTube. But! We’ll take any morsel we can get.
Late last night (Aug. 30), Utada’s team uploaded a behind-the-scenes mini-documentary for the “Forevermore” video, featuring input by Hikki herself, choreographer Fukiko Takase and director Jamie-James Medina.
True to Utada’s bilingual being, the making-of bounces between Japanese and English, as the creators discuss the intention behind the video. (Basically, Utada really wanted to dance.)
As for (spoiler alert!) that jarring cameo from a CGI creature at the very end — it’s the Geico gecko, let’s be real — emerging from an egg in Hikki’s hands at the very end? It’s all symbolism for new beginnings, of course.
“You took that away from the set. It was quite a visceral sort of coming-of-age song, and this creature is coming to life,” the animator (presumably?) explains. “In some ways, that relationship comes through in the work.”
As we already know, Utada started working on a Fantome follow-up already. And so, to quote “Animato,” this is the start of something new and interesting.
“I just started to think about how this album was a new sound or a new stage in her career, and this new rebirth of something. And I think that you guys in Japan are also familiar with her over so many years, but this felt like a new chapter in a way. So I just felt like those two ideas could come together and create something important,” the director explained.
Watch Hikki break it down, with both her seriously toned arms and her words, above.
“Forevermore” was released on July 28. (iTunes)