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Exclusive Interview: Director of Goyte’s Easy Way Out

Yesterday, we showed you an award-winning stop-motion created by Oh Yeah Wow for Goyte. The song Easy Way Out came to life as the Belgium-born, Melbourne-raised singer Goyte (most known for his US breakout hit song, Somebody That I Used to Know) hilariously showed us what a boring, repetition-filled life looked like. In true zombie form, he passed from one scene to another, slowly destroying himself.

Today, we bring you the exclusive one-on-one interview we just conducted with Easy Way Out's director Darcy Prendergast. In the midst of feverishly packing his bags for France (Easy Way Out is nominated for best music video at the Annecy International Animated Festival), he took a moment to stop and talk to us about the story behind this highly creative music video.

In shooting Easy Way Out, what was your greatest challenge?
The main challenge was how to make a monotonous, boring routine engaging and entertaining. I've seen so many of these types of clips, we all have – where a boring man works a boring job, and they're definitely repetitive – to the point where I turn them off because they don't give you anything else. So, I think the main challenge was giving the audience a reason to keep watching. What we gave them was, in essence, a repetitive, stop-motion train crash. We watch as this three-time Grammy Award winner's life falls apart.

Tell us about the set you created.
Coming from a clay animation background, I'd only ever built miniature sets so we had to build what was basically a small house. We had lunch in it, we had afternoon naps on the bed and our actual studio fridge was painted gray and used in the kitchen.

We completely tiled the bathroom ourselves without knowing how. We purchased and animated over 10,000 sheets of paper in his office. We found the toilet in the branches of a friend's tree and the bed used was the bed I lost my virginity on. I didn't tell the team that when they napped on it.

Then, after all of that, we burnt it to the ground with a flamethrower for the final camera pass (see photo immediately above, that's Darcy!). That was a personal highlight for me. I love the smell of napalm lingering in the studio for months.

From this video, what's the best compliment you received?
Snagging three out of the three awards we were eligible for at St. Kilda Film Festival last week would have to to serve as a pretty heartwarming compliment!

What do you hope others get out of it?
Maybe it was an early love for punk rock, but I knew from a young age that I saw the world in a different light. People subscribe to social norms; buying brand new cars and homes that in turn have them locked in debt for years, spending huge amounts of money on weddings because everyone else does it. A lot of it, though not all, is stupidity built on stupidity and It amazes me how many people are slaves to routine and tradition. I guess I'd just like to gently nudge those who are locked into the grind, to look at their options, decisions and reasons. Life is a wondrous thing if you craft it to be.

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