Sabrina Carpenter's Barry Keoghan-led “Please Please Please” video was inspired by Bennifer and Quentin Tarantino

Barry Keoghan

For years, pop culture has been obsessed with unconventional love stories between a 'good girl' and a 'bad boy', usually involving criminal activity. This can be seen in beloved films such as Buffalo '66, True Romance, Wild at Heart, Natural Born Killers, and Cry-Baby. And now, the tradition lives on with Sabrina Carpenter's latest music video for her song "Please Please Please". The video features Sabrina playing the role of a mob girlfriend to her charming and troublemaking boyfriend, played by her real-life beau and actor Barry Keogan. The video is full of playful, alluring moments, and even includes the memorable line: "Heartbreak is one thing, my ego's another. I beg you don't embarrass me, motherfucker."

Barry Keoghan - Figure 1
Photo British GQ

When you first glance at them, their appearance will catch your attention. They both wear matching cross necklaces, but Keogan has opted for an unbuttoned black polo while Carpenter stands out in a shimmering sequin dress, paired with stockings, watches, chains, and muscle tees. And not to forget, the striking flamingo-coloured Alexandre Vauthier Couture fur coat. If you're searching for some outfit inspiration, then you can take cues from "Please Please Please," which serves as a mood board, thanks to Carpenter and her stylist, Ron Hartleben.

However, let's talk about the actual video. We had the opportunity to speak with Bardia Zeinali, the director who has previously created music videos for renowned artists such as Kacey Musgraves, Troye Sivan, and Ariana Grande. He shared with us how he came up with the concept and made the music video that has already been thoroughly analyzed across the globe.

GQ: Could you share with us some details on how you initially thought of this idea?

Bardia Zeinali collaborated with Sabrina's team on the concept for the new project. They wanted it to continue from where the previous one, "Espresso," left off. The focus was on Sabrina's character's attraction to someone with chaotic behavior. Bardia developed the idea further and thought about specific scenarios. He liked the idea of a role reversal and an exchange of power towards the end. He also noticed recurring patterns, like the same location and Sabrina's character picking up the person at different times and days.

Who came up with the plan to include Barry?

Me. I wouldn't recommend that. I thought that it would be intrusive. It seems like something personal and I wanted her to make the decision herself. However, secretly, I had always hoped for it to happen. It seems like a very logical thing to do because he's a fantastic actor from our generation and there's great chemistry between them.

How was it working with Barry as a director?

He's fantastic. Extremely receptive, willing to listen to and follow instructions, and very open-minded. I believe that since it was his girlfriend's video, he was very aware and considerate of not overshadowing her or stealing the spotlight. It was incredibly kind of him to strive to do his best while also striving to stay in the background. You could see that he wanted to be respectful and let his girlfriend enjoy her moment. Additionally, he had a precise idea of how he wanted to portray the character, including their style and behavior. He knew exactly how he wanted to dress and act, leaving no room for misunderstandings.

Sabrina Carpenter takes a turn into the high-speed lane.

After the debut of her most recent song "Fast Times," Sabrina Carpenter, a 22-year-old singer, discusses with GQ about the sources of inspiration for her song, the type of music people can expect from her in the future, and the toughest challenges she faced while living in the public eye.

I really enjoy watching polo games and the way the players make matching crosses with their mallets. Do you happen to have any amusing stories from behind the scenes?

When I first received the track, I was hesitant about whether or not I should pursue it. I was dealing with a lot at the time and felt quite stressed out. However, something exciting and unexpected happened that same day- I spotted someone wearing a Sabrina Carpenter t-shirt right in front of me! It was as if fate was pushing me in the direction of taking on this opportunity.

The media often portrays the pairing of a well-behaved lady with a rebellious gentleman. Did you take any cues or ideas from movies or other forms of popular culture for your project?

The team looked to popular films and celebrities for inspiration when bringing the concept of Pam and Tommy, Madonna and Dennis Rodman, and even J Lo and Ben Affleck to life. Quentin Tarantino's Natural Born Killers, Bonnie and Clyde, and Thelma and Louise were all cited as references for the spirit they wanted to capture. Although J Lo and Ben Affleck were not a direct reference, their exciting careers and dynamic as a young couple informed the project. However, it is important to note that this is a fictional story, not a portrayal of real life.

Sabrina was arrested at the conclusion of "Espresso". Is this a part of a larger fictional universe, or is it a standalone element?

I find it enjoyable when there is a consistent theme throughout a movie, and I believe that the director feels the same way. However, I do not perceive this to be a direct follow-up to the previous film. The new movie has a distinct style and era compared to its predecessor. Nevertheless, there are small nods to the previous film like the use of a song and a reference to the title, which ties them together. Yet, this is not a sequel. The cohesive nature of the director's artistic vision is apparent, but it is not a continuation of the previous story.

It makes me think of Rihanna's song "Bitch Better Have My Money," in a way.

The music video was a turning point in my life. I clearly remember the location where I saw it. It had a significant influence on me. The video was incredibly daring and bold. The ferocity displayed was impressive and daring.

The release date for Sabrina Carpenter's Short 'n' Sweet is on August 23rd.

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