TIME Music

This Is What It’s Like to Direct Beyoncé in a Music Video

See behind-the-scenes footage of Jonas Åkerlund directing King Bey in two clips

“If you want your average video,” says Swedish director Jonas Åkerlund, “I’m probably not your guy.” Considering the enterprise Beyoncé took on when she decided to make her self-titled 2013 project a visual album, it makes sense that she would choose to work with a director like Åkerlund. In a behind-the-scenes video released to accompany the new Platinum Edition Box Set of Beyoncé, Åkerlund discusses the artistic decisions the pair made in the videos for “Haunted” and “Superpower.”

Åkerlund explains that he gets as much footage as he can — for “Haunted,” two days’ worth of four cameras shooting — and makes the magic happen in the editing room. That video relied less on choreography than on nailing a particular aesthetic to match the movie score quality of the song.

For “Superpower,” Åkerlund wanted to create extreme visuals that stood in contrast to the song’s laidback tempo. The crew took over a gated area where, Åkerlund says, “We could trash it, we could burn it, we could do anything we wanted.” The result is an almost apocalyptic setting where people come together to find strength in unity and love.

Beyoncé’s Platinum Edition includes two new songs, four new remixes, photo books, a calendar, and a DVD of live performances.

TIME movies

See Why Benedict Cumberbatch Is So Photogenic

Behind the scenes of TIME's latest cover shoot with Benedict Cumberbatch

Benedict Cumberbatch’s face doesn’t have a good side or a bad side — he’s very symmetrical, says photographer Dan Winters, who shot him for this week’s TIME cover.

“I’m not as concerned as I would normally have to be about where I’m positioning him, where I’m lighting from,” says Winters. “A lot of actors are pretty asymmetrical, and you have to work around that.”

In the cover image, Cumberbatch is seated behind a table, framed by both real and recreated World War II items: a rare vintage Enigma machine, a bomb wheel made by Winters, and more. The setup was meant to capture Cumberbatch as an actor with a nod to his upcoming film, The Imitation Game, says Winters.

“He showed up with a cool and modern retro version of what he wore in the film — something, he told me, he thought Turing would have worn if alive today,” Winters told TIME LightBox. “He had done his work and we used that in the shoot.”

The resulting mood of the photo was “quiet, a little pensive, sort of contemplative.” And yes, Cumberbatch looks great in it.

Click here to read more about the shoot.

Read next: Go Behind TIME’s Benedict Cumberbatch Cover With Photographer Dan Winters

TIME Television

Go Behind the Scenes of Better Call Saul

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Featuring 'surprises that Breaking Bad fans are just going to eat up." 

A new behind-the-scenes video of the making of Better Call Saul gives Breaking Bad fans little information about plot but does reveal what they can expect from the spinoff: Just what they’re looking for.

Bob Odenkirk and co. remind fans that the Vince Gilligan spinoff will feature “surprises that Breaking Bad fans are going to eat up.”

The cast and crew, including star Breaking Bad alumns Bob Odenkirk and Jonathan Banks, seems just as excited as fans that the spinoff rumor turned into a reality. “It’s like a high school reunion,” says SFX supervisor Werner Hanlein. “With great people, not like high school.”

The much-hyped prequel arrives in February and will follow Odenkirk as he reprises his role as the sleazy attorney Saul Goodman. The only plot secret that’s been slipped: Goodman won’t be so familiar to fans at the start. Set in Albuquerque in 2002, the story will follow Jimmy McGill as he transforms into the shady criminal defense lawyer everyone is familiar with. Breaking Bad‘s Vince Gilligan and Peter Gould are returning to work their magic on the script. No word on Bryan Cranston reprising his role as Walter White just yet, but a car wash scene has not been ruled out.

Check it out for yourself:

TIME movies

Watch the Interstellar Stars Behind the Scenes of a TIME Cover Shoot

Check out this video of Interstellar stars Matthew McConaughey, Jessica Chastain, Anne Hathaway and director Christopher Nolan posing for New York City based photographer Robert Maxwell. The shoot for this TIME magazine cover took place at The California Science Center in Los Angeles.

Interstellar follows the story of space explorers who must enter a newly discovered wormhole to save Earth. It hits theaters Nov. 7 and also stars Michael Caine, Wes Bentley and John Lithgow.

TIME celebrities

Go Behind the Scenes of Jessica Chastain’s TIME Photo Shoot

The actress brings out her glamorous side

Jessica Chastain’s face will be seen in many places this fall — in addition to starring in The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby (which is not just one, but three films) the actress also has major roles in Interstellar and A Most Violent Year, all of which will be released in the upcoming season.

Chastain is featured in this week’s TIME Fall Arts Preview and was photographed by Peter Hapak at Milk Studios in New York City.

Take a behind-the-scenes teaser in the video above.

TIME movies

Go Behind the Scenes of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, and Megan Fox

Go behind the scenes of the new film Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, and more specifically, Megan Fox

Take an inside look into the newly released action film, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, starring Megan Fox and Will Arnett and produced by Michael Bay.

The Turtles are back on the big screen for the first time since 2007 in a brand new adaptation, with director Jonathan Liebesman utilizing CGI and other technology in order to bring the mutant superheroes to life.

In this behind-the-scenes look at the new movie, Fox and Liebesman discuss the Turtles themselves and offer up more scenes for an added sneak peek.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles is now playing in theaters nationwide.

TIME movies

Go Behind the Scenes of Wong Fu’s First Feature Film

An inside look at the popular YouTube team's foray into a more traditional format: feature film

When I arrive on the set of Wong Fu Productions’ first feature film in Pasadena, CA, they’re in the middle of shooting one of the most emotional scenes in the movie.

Everyone, from the production crew to the hair and makeup artists, is speaking in hushed tones — even though the action is taking place in a separate room.

That’s because we’re actually shooting in the Wong Fu Productions office, where a corner of the space (which, on a normal day, looks like a typical workspace with desks and computers) has been transformed into a mock college dorm room, complete with actual walls, a microwave, a bed, and other furnishings. The door to the room has been propped open to leave room for the camera, and also to prevent the set from becoming too hot.

“The way we do things is pretty unconventional,” says Philip Wang, who cofounded Wong Fu with college friends Wesley Chan and Ted Fu. “I like to say it’s resourceful.”

For Wong Fu, which got its start in 2003 and quickly gained a strong following with the growing popularity of its YouTube channel (which now has over 2 million subscribers), a long day of shooting is nothing new. What’s different this time around is the length of time spent on one particular project.

“Now, we just kind of have this mentality of like, ‘Hey, it’s just like we’re just making 20 shorts, all in a row,'” Wang says. “We do that anyways throughout a year. Now it’s just condensing it all into one.”

Wong Fu is in a unique position as an independent production company for a few reasons: The trio had already begun to make popular videos before YouTube came along — videos were passed around through download links on their website and fans’ instant messenger profiles — and were able to take advantage of the viral potential afforded them by the new platform. Notably, they also feature a primarily Asian-American cast in their shorts; they attribute much of their success to a largely Asian-American viewership eager to see themselves represented in the media. Wong Fu produces character-based short films, which Wang believes is distinct from the typical viral videos that attract views through shock value or cuteness.

In March, Wong Fu raised $358,308 on Indiegogo for their movie, making their project currently the fourth-best funded film on the crowd-funding website.

The film’s plot focuses on two couples at different stages of their relationships, set in a world where “all relationship activity is documented and monitored by the Department of Emotional Integrity (DEI)” and is assigned a number like a credit score.

The young couple featured in the video above is played by Victoria Park and Brandon Soo Hoo. (The rest of the principal cast includes a mix of familiar names and new faces: Randall Park, Ki Hong Lee, Chris Riedell, Aaron Yoo, Joanna Sotomura and Brittany Ishibashi.)

The scene I witness is a tense moment because, for the first time in their relationship, the two have to learn to deal with the challenges of a long distance relationship.

“No one was wrong in that argument,” says Chan, who co-directed the movie with Wang. “We want you to side with both of the characters. That’s one of the real life, relatable elements we wanted to include — that a lot of times, when we argue, there’s no right or wrong.”

Shooting officially wrapped last week, and the movie will be in post-production for the next three to four months. What happens from there isn’t set in stone yet, but Wong Fu plans to submit the film to various festivals as they work out the details of a release plan.

In the meantime, it’s also worth keeping an eye out for a possible upcoming engagement video — according to the movie’s Indiegogo page, one lucky donor claimed a Wong Fu wedding video package for $8,000.

TIME movies

Watch Vin Diesel Say His Only Line in Guardians of the Galaxy in 4 Different Languages

"Yo soy Groot"

Vin Diesel’s character Groot may play an integral role in Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy, but the tree-creature superhero he plays is only capable of saying three words: “I am Groot.”

So when the actor provided the voice for his character, he did so not just for the English version of the film but for various dubbed versions for foreign audiences. Diesel also voiced Groot in Russian, Portuguese, French, and Spanish, all of which were filmed as part of behind-the-scenes footage for the film.

Guardians of The Galaxy is now playing in theaters nationwide.

TIME movies

Behind the Scenes Look at Lucy, Scarlett Johansson’s Newest Film

Go behind the scenes of the highly-anticipated film Lucy, starring Scarlett Johansson and Morgan Freeman. The film explores an individual’s brain capacity — the film posits that humans currently use 10 percent of their brains, while asking what might happen if 100 percent was accessed. The film tells the story of a young woman who, when put under extenuating circumstances against her will, is scientifically altered in a way that allows for her to access a much greater capacity of her brainpower. In this sneak peek, the two stars discuss exploring brain capacity, as well as the film’s main character, Lucy. You can see Lucy in theaters nationwide beginning Friday.

TIME Behind the scenes

Go Behind the Scenes for Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

The movie's director, Matt Reeves, and star, Gary Oldman, talk about their new film.

Here’s an exclusive look at the just-released Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, the highly-anticipated sequel to the 2011 blockbuster Rise of the Planet of the Apes.

In this sneak peek, director Matt Reeves and star Gary Oldman discuss where the last film left off and the status of the apes when this film begins. Now that human civilization has been almost entirely wiped from the planet, the remaining humans struggle for survival as the apes become the dominant species. Oldman also discusses the films use of motion capture.

You can see Dawn of the Planet of the Apes starting Friday, July 11 in theaters nationwide.

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