A conversation between anaiis and director Jenny Brough about the making of the video for ‘chuu’.

In the surreal video for her latest track ‘chuu’, French-Senegalese artist anaiis finds herself in a feverish Alejandro Jodorowsky-inspired situation that reflects her own nightmare situation trapped by the politics of the major label system. An original commission by Fact, the making of the video video offered a moment of catharsis for anaiis, who likens the experience of the mainstream music industry to that of being trapped in an abusive relationship. “The person will do something really nice, and then he’ll beat you,” anaiis says. “The moment you’re disobedient, you take a blow in the face. So you’re constantly confused.”

The ideas behind the video are explored in the accompanying behind-the-scenes video, which sees anaiis in conversation with video director Jenny Brough. “It was the honesty that you brought to the song which was just so refreshing,” Brough explains. “So I think for me it was just trying to work between realising that for you this was a nightmare and it wasn’t what you wanted or how you imagined everything would turn out, so it was playing on that with the visuals of how you were in a dream space and you were reliving those moments again.”

“I am sad that it’s like this,” anaiis tells Fact. “I look at people like Frank Ocean and look at the artists that have been able to free themselves from these sorts of situations. He does give a lot of hope to people like me. I speak to a lot of independent artists and I think these stories need to be shared.”

“It’s the basis of your self worth” anaiis continues. “I think, especially for black artists in the UK who feel that there’s very little space for them in the in the music industry, as soon as someone presents them with an opportunity, they’re very inclined to take it and they’re very inclined to accept it because they’re made to feel like they should be really lucky to be in this space. There’s a moment when you realize that actually, oh, no, I am worth a lot more than this. I’m not giving you 80% of what I’m going to earn, you can’t buy me out. Everybody else is making money on the artist except the artists in this industry.”

“It’s important to talk about music industry practices, so that there can be a shift and that we can actually start to value the artists and their well being again, because that is the source of the art. At the end of the day, if the artist isn’t in a good place, what are they going to create?”

‘chuu’ is out now – watch both the original video for the track and the Director’s Cut. You can find anaiis on Instagram.

Behind the Scenes video captured by Alexandra Waespi and edited by Josef Goss

chuu Credits: 

Directed by Jenny Brough
Produced by Ella Kenny
Concept by Jenny Brough, Abdourahman ‘Yagamoto’ Njie, anaiis 
Direction of Photography – Jeremy Valender
Set Design – Thomas Bird
Movement & Casting – Abdourahman ‘Yagamoto’ Njie
Styling & Costumes – Natalie Roar
Make Up – Sergio Alvarez
Hair – Regina Meesen
Cast – Abdourahman ‘Yagamoto’ Njie, Ethan Jacobs, The Majeesty Twins
Project Management – Alex Ali Mohammadi
Production Assistant – Nycollas Abreu
Executive Producer – Sam Holmes at OB Management
Set Design Assistants – Joshua Parker, Raffi Bates & Ben Robinson
Focus Puller – Mark Gee
Gaffer – Peter Bishop
Steadicam Operator – Jake Whitehouse
Spark – Gule Korkmaz & Phillipe Dali at Panalux
Styling Assistants – Emmanouela Megkistou, Malcolm Yaeng
Make Up Assistant – Luke Armitano
Runner – Larissa Lorenco
Editor – Ben Fitzgerald
Colour Grade – John O’Riordan at Pundersons Gardens
Thanks to Karine Gama at Panalux and George Rumsey at Panavision.