Lily Rose’s music first caught listeners’ attention in December 2020, when her song “Villain” became a TikTok sensation prior to its official release as a single. When it did officially release, the song debuted at No. 1 on the iTunes all-genre chart.
As the song stayed atop the iTunes chart week after week, labels were watching with interest and by early January of this year, Rose had not only filmed a video for the song (directed by Ben Skipworth), but had inked a joint deal with Big Loud/Republic Records and Back Blocks.
Rose penned “Villain” alongside Mackenzie Carpenter and Kyle Clark. Instead of staying true to the song’s tale of a romantic breakup, Rose says the team opted for a “bad cop/chase” storyline, where Rose pretends to be a good cop chasing a bad guy, but turns out to be a dirty cop in the end.
Rose detailed the video’s making to CMT:
What do you remember most about the day/night you shot this video?
My brother stepped in to be an actor! He was the bartender in “Act 3” of the video. Getting to fake fight was so cool, too! I really enjoyed shooting that whole scene.
How does the video bring your song to life?
We decided to not go with the “romantic” aspect of the song. We decided to go pretty left field with it and moved forward with a classic “bad cop/chase” kinda “Villain” video.
What message do you hope your fans take away from the video?
I hope fans can take away just pure entertainment and see the creativity for a “villain/hero” story with the video. Again, it was not a literal interpretation of the song and I’m really stoked with the response!
How did it feel to see the finished product for the first time?
I was blown away. I remember we went from edit #2 to edit #3 of the video and it completely knocked me off my feet!