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Rammstein – Making Of The Video “Mein Herz Brennt”.
(From “Videos” DVD, 2012).
English subtitles.
Age rating: 16+.


E.R. – Eugenio Recuenco (1st Director).
Z.B. – Zoran Bihac (2nd Director).
T.L. – Till Lindermann (Vocalism).
R.Z.K. – Richard Z. Kruspe (Solo-guitar).
P.H.L. – Paul Heiko Landers (Rhythm-guitar).
C.S. – Christoph Schneider (Drums).
C.F.L. – Christian Flake Lorenz (Keyboard).
O.R. – Oliver Riedel (Bass-guitar).
M.S. – Max Stolzenberg (3D Supervisor).
S.K. – Stefan Kessner (Compositing Artist).
S.S. – Survey Squad.
U.M. – Unknown Man.


(December, 2011).

O.R.: Right now we're here in Beelitz, in the sanatorium, and we're shooting “Mein Herz brennt”.

T.L.: Strange place, smells like murder. There was a murder here. Some Goths had a fight and stabbed each other.

C.S.: As far as I know, this was once a lung clinic, a psychiatric institution and a Russian hospital.

R.Z.K.: Here in this room, lung patients were cured – in very mysterious ways.

T.L.: We knew that the clinic was derelict and that scavengers had already been here and taken some old gynaecologists' chairs or medical instruments, I don't know.

P.H.L.: I'll tell you something, but it's a secret! Years ago, I broke in here with my girlfriend and stole stuff because I thought it was going to be pulled down anyway (laugh). I don't do that any more, now I buy everything legally.

(Prepare to shooting on screen).

C.S.: This is our 24th video. And... yes, looking back I think all the videos we've made are good. Even if most of them weren't picnics to shoot.

P.H.L.: We knew the windows here have no panes and when you shoot a video everything is taken into consideration just not how to keep the artists warm. So filming means we freeze.

(Video “Mein Herz Brennt” on screen).

(Shooting).

P.H.L.: “Mein Herz brennt” is an unexploited treasure.  It somehow slipped through our fingers back then.

O.R.: Maybe the song best represents our work as a whole.

C.S.: The text is full of strong imagery. It's worth translating it into pictures again.

(Shooting).

C.S.: The lyrics are a bit mysterious and gruesome, nightmarish.

(Shooting).

T.L.: Everyone knows the situation where you dream stuff you dreamed of as a kid – recurring dreams, and that was a subject worth looking at. Dealing with childhood stuff.

(Shooting).

R.Z.K.: Everyone interprets the lyrics their own way and comes up with their own stories. I always had the image in my head that a “monster” took its strength from children's tears by sucking them up with a syringe and injecting them into it's veins.

T.L.: (On  shooting stage) No Nintendo today, no pudding and off to bed early.

T.L.: If you look at the last cover, then you recognize a morbidity in the whole thing and all the connections to Rubens and Eugenio's affinity for old clothes and Rococo, Renaissance stuff.

E.R.: I did the cover and the photos in the book and we worked together in America on a book and a single. Yeah, I like working with the band very much.

C.F.L.: And it was so good that we wanted to go on working with him.

(Shooting).

C.F.L.: (On  shooting stage) Today people pay to be allowed to bathe!

L.B.: I know Till and Flake really well. And it was really weird on the set – we even got hanged! Then at the end I was chained to the bed, that was pretty creepy!

(Shooting).

E.R.: The most important thing about Rammstein is that they have a strong image. If you look at their career, they've always had a strong, but at the same time, changing image. This gives you the freedom to do something in your own style. And the most important thing is to try and do something that is strong, that is personal and that people like. I know what's expected, but it should still be a surprise how Rammstein come across.

O.R.: The good thing about Eugenio is that with us he can develop and realize his creativity.

R.Z.K.: And that of course is always a great big adventure.

P.H.L.: We've done several shoots with him that were chaotic, where the Spanish and German mentalities collided...

U.M.: (On shooting stage) Slowly!

P.H.L.: ...but the results have always been so impressive that we tolerated the torment as part of the package.

P.H.L.: (On shooting stage) Minus 4 degrees and bad communication.

T.L.: So it's not really a question of having fun here. Yesterday, the burning wall was fairly cool!

(Shooting).

T.L.: I was happy that it burned for so long because the accelerant should really have evaporated during all the craziness with the playback which wouldn't work and all the waiting and setting up the camera. So at least that worked and was really OK. They're Spanish (laugh) and their watches tick a bit differently to ours as far as the way of working and everything goes. They're – to put it politely – a bit more relaxed. They couldn't work in a normal German factory! You do sometimes reach your limits, but that doesn't matter, it's the result that counts.

(Shooting).

R.Z.K.: It's quite simply that the main director Eugenio speaks no English and no German, only Spanish and French. The cameraman only speaks French, the stylists only speak Czech, and everyone else speaks German. So a lot of things have to be done intuitively.

(Shooting).

P.H.L.: Eugenio creates really strong imagery. That includes a lot of costumes, weird-looking people, strange atmospheres and storylines.

T.L.: Now everyone's in love with everyone else. But as usual it takes a bit of time to get close to each other. That's quite normal – at the start we're all strangers... ...and at the end of the shoot, when the time comes to part, it's all hugs and kisses (smile). Yeah, she's fantastic! So confident and cool, considering how she looks. You're left in a state of trauma when everyone stares at you all the time. She can't talk to anyone without them noticing that she's different because of her vocal register – so, hats off to her. We've invited her to our concert. I think we'll keep in touch with her, she's brilliant!

(Shooting).

R.Z.K.: I don't know her background. But what I find so fascinating is that in such a situation, regardless of how it came about, whether by birth or illness, you can choose such an active path for your life by saying, OK, I'm going to use this to make a career as an actor. I find that fascinating and extremely positive!

O.R.: That she opens up to us to this extent, that makes it all so personal. And I have enormous respect for that!

(Shooting).

CF.L.: This isn't the standard band video everybody knows with rock 'n' roll and drinking Coke and so on, this is something else, something artistic.

(Shooting).

(Video “Mein Herz Brennt” on screen).


(June, 2012).

C.F.L.: Nothing went wrong. We tried an experiment – making a video with Eugenio. It's just that we have pretty high standards when it comes to videos, which is why we decided not to use it.

O.R.: It just didn't grab you. By that I mean that the music didn't match the pictures.

R.Z.K.: A good example of theory and practice. Eugenio is a good guy, a great photographer. With a video, you need someone who has a strong feeling for rhythm, who can also recognize the dramaturgy in a song.

P.H.L.: We're now going to shoot some extra footage to try and save the video. It's a bit like the Euro relief fund – before it fails completely, we're pumping some more in.

(Prepare to shooting on screen).

P.H.L. : (On shooting stage) Herr Schneider please!

P.H.L.: Hi, I'm playing Ben Gunn. We're shooting Part IV of Treasure Island, with a soundtrack by Rammstein. I just hope they don't get wind of it, because they could sue us. They love doing that.

Z.B.: I've joined the project because the video as it stands is incomplete. That means lots of footage was shot, but it didn't all fit the song and wasn't let's say dramaturgically right. It looked beautiful, but it didn't lead anywhere. In other words it was a dead end. Then they called me – and here I am (smile)!

(Prepare to shooting on screen).

Z.B.: This is my fourth Rammstein video. The first was with ants, then in “Mein Teil” it was elements of psychological self-awareness (laugh), then we were in Rumania, in the Carpathians, shooting more self-identity stuff. And now we're kind of coming full circle.

R.Z.K.: We're shooting scenes that we think we need to finish the video.

C.F.L.: It's fun! It's not like we're having a bad time. The weather's good, the food's great, I'm in a good mood - everything's cool!

Z.B.: The stuff shot in December is kind of the past. What we're doing now is a kind of the present and a look into the future – with references to the past. Those who were children back then are now the Rammsteins of today, as it were. In principle, it's a child's nightmare that won't go away. And the woman turns up again, only this time as an old woman.

(Shooting).

A.V.R.: This isn't the first time I've worked with Rammstein. Two years ago we made “Haifisch” and I was one of the mourners. I enjoyed it so much (laugh), when we were finished I said: If you ever need me, I'd love to work with you again. And (laugh) now it's happened.

Z.B.: (On shooting stage) Shall we? Sorry. No, stay here. No, no. In the final position, just so we can see what it looks like. You've got it. You just let yourself fall. just let yourself go.

Like this – right down.

A.V.R.: (On shooting stage) Oh, all the way down?

Z.B.: (On shooting stage) Right, to this position. And that makes for a lovely shot - the dying swan.

(Shooting).

T.L.: (On shooting stage) So, I embrace you.

A.V.R.: (On shooting stage) Yes.

T.L.: (On shooting stage) Rock back and forth, pull that out. And then, like this.

A.V.R.: We had a quick chat before we started shooting and I had complete faith in them and wasn't the least bit afraid. Well, I know their music and their lyrics so I wasn't expecting a honeymoon atmosphere here. I was prepared for pretty well anything. I think it's beautiful  (smile)!

(Shooting).

Z.B.: (On shooting stage) Anna, fantastic! You're our Black Swan. Wonderful!

R.Z.K.: What we definitely needed to reshoot was the vocal performance.

P.H.L.: I think it looks really terrible when the singer walks down corridors singing. That's pretty close to the cheesiest pop music...

(Shooting).

P.H.L.: ...but the main thing is that the video is good. For that I'm prepared to make compromises.

(Shooting).

R.Z.K.: With Zoran, you can shoot the craziest, most embarrassing things. He doesn't care what the band looks like. He's open to anything and that's great.

P.H.L.: Unfortunately, now we all look like Rumpelstiltskin (laugh) or like “singing-dancing trees”. Till looks – I'd better not say it, I don't want to get in trouble. Schneider looks like he's really sick, a junkie. Flake looks like that guy in “Waterworld” in all that oil at the bottom of the tanker. Either way, I don't want to go into detail. Either way – I don't think it's right that we all look so crazy. It doesn't really suit our image.

R.Z.K.: This is the kind of look when you've been stuck in a hole for 25 or 30 years with no time for a haircut or daily care.

P.H.L.: Our image is, well, we dress pretty cool, muscular, attractive, even at our age, and now we're all like garden gnomes come to life.

S.S.: (On shooting stage) Rattle! Rattle! Now get up!

(Shooting).

C.F.L.: Zoran is trying to shoot scenes that translate the energy of the song better into pictures. That means the band has to play the chorus on cellos, and jig about a bit so that there's some movement.

O.R.: None of us can play the cello and that's how it will look. It's extremely difficult to fake. But maybe we can do it with some kind of effects.

C.S.: We're going to try it at least. And now I've got a cello lesson.

(Shooting).

(Video “Mein Herz Brennt” on screen).

Z.B.: The important thing is that the emotion comes across, that it's tangible. And when you see it it sets off something inside you. And if it sets something off inside you that's perfect!

(Video “Mein Herz Brennt” on screen).

R.Z.K: Let's see how it all turns out!

C.S.: Maybe we'll all meet up again in 6 months, and it'll become the eternal video.

R.Z.K.: Like the “Never-Ending Story”.

C.S.: And maybe at some point, when we retire, we'll release it. And it'll be video everyone wants to see! The Secret Video. Ach – I think it'll end up being really good.

C.F.L.: I certainly hope so!

P.H.L.: (On shooting stage) We're burning!

(Shooting).

S.S.: (On shooting stage) Quiet please and - action!

Don't forget to look back. The house is on fire! Yes!

Z.B.: (On shooting stage) Confident – into the future!

(Shooting).

(Video “Mein Herz Brennt” on screen).


Text by Shman.



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