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The Directors Bureau’s Dugan O’Neal Breaks a Leg in Kunzite's Music Video 'VAPORS'

Starring the director himself, Dugan’s clip evokes 80s-90s era open casting calls

The Directors Bureau’s Dugan O’Neal Breaks a Leg in Kunzite's Music Video 'VAPORS'

Writer/director Dugan O’Neal, out of LA-based production company The Directors Bureau , pays homage to vintage acting audition tapes in his latest music video project “VAPORS” for multi-dimensional sound system Kunzite. Starring himself, O’Neal’s clip evokes 80s-90s era open casting calls. O’Neal spares no detail concerning authentic vintage attire, VHS film-graininess and retro office decor to forge the video’s comical self-consciousness.

In the video, O’Neal plays an eager actor waiting his turn behind other hopefuls for a chance at his big break alongside the duo Kunzite. Actors line up and perform for a disinterested crew, where they play shocked, craft interpretive dance moves, rock out with air instruments and make faces without shame. In cuts between the nonsensical audition sequence and the waiting room, the nervous actor only finds momentary solace upon the entrance of another actress, played by his wife, Bethany McCarty. When it is the actor’s turn to showcase his talents for the stern producer and bemused musicians, he mentally transports himself to a woodsy ethereal realm, where he finds the freedom and confidence to let loose. The surly director visible throughout is played by O’Neal’s father, Tom Gundelfinger O'Neal, making the music video a family affair.

Notes O’Neal, “(As a director) I sit through a lot of auditions, which is obviously an interesting and strange process. Taken out of context, the vaguer the audition is, the more it feels like performance art. I started thinking while watching an audition, this should be a music video. I also fell in love with the idea of an actor having a totally transcendent spiritual experience while auditioning and when they're done, it’s like, “next!”. I wanted the video to be full of joy and humor and wanted the auditions to be a celebration of human expression."

O’Neal is a notable music video director, having crafted films alongside such artists as HAIM, RY X, Chromeo and The Temper Trap, among others. He has also helmed commercial projects for brands including McDonald’s, PlayStation, KFC, Jack Links and Ultra. O’Neal broke into the industry with his music video for rock band TV On The Radio, Will Do/Nine Types of Light , which was nominated for a Grammy in 2011.


Written & Directed By: Dugan O’Neal

Production Company: The Directors Bureau

Producer: Benjamin Gilovitz

Executive Producer: Sue Yeon Ahn

Director Of Photography: Drew Bienemann

Camera Operator: Logan Triplett

2Nd Ac/ Loader: Amina Zadeh

Editor: Paul Rogers

Colourist: Ricky Gausis @ MPC

Casting: Broad-Cast Casting

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Category: Music video , Short films

Genre: Music performance