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Animal Collective

Yes, no, maybe, yes but not here, not now, maybe later… We had been trying to shoot Animal Collective for more than a year, and for more than a year they had been playing cat and mouse with us. When we finally had the opportunity, right before their show at the Cabaret Sauvage, we already had something else scheduled. Vincent Moon could not miss it, so I went to the other shooting with Jeremiah, so that he could at last film the three obscure, fascinating and almost inaccessible guys.

On the evening, Moon did not know what to tell me. It was weird, it was magical, it was nothing… He was both bewitched and puzzled. He finally said something: “the sound was incredible, but the pictures, I’m not sure… We’ll have to do something experimental, mix everything up…”

Then, a new editor arrived, George Pompidup, and along with him, a curse. The band had already announced their Take Away Show, the editing was going well, and suddenly, the movie was nowhere to be found. For two months we could not lay hands on it. We even received insults from Animal Collective fans. Finally, in mid-January, Pompidup came back with an editing attempt.

I had not seen nor heard what happened during that Take away show, and I discovered Pompidup had broken the Take away shows orthodoxy: a zillion filters, cuts… But he had done something uncredible: in the first video, he had mixed two different takes from the same song, and two completely different takes in the second one. He had created songs from the rushes. And it worked.

The discomfort felt at the beginning becomes fascination, every scene becomes the piece of a puzzle, a piece which is examined so that we can guess what part of the song it belongs to. In the end, Animal Collective caused us some difficulties and they were hard-liner enough to have us follow them. We went in a tunnel, we followed a shopping cart, they yelled in plastic cups. But above all, though they had us follow them, play with them, it was only to give us pieces we would try and build something with.

So that we would also experiment to achieve our Take away show.