Newsweek magazine labelled Grand Rapids, Michigan a “dying city”. Naturally, the residents didn’t take too kindly to that designation, and this lip-dub video was their response.
Rob Bliss, the director and executive producer of the video, said in the YouTube description:
"The Grand Rapids LipDub Video was filmed May 22nd, with 5,000 people, and involved a major shutdown of downtown Grand Rapids, which was filled with marching bands, parades, weddings, motorcades, bridges on fire, and helicopter take offs. It is the largest and longest LipDub video, to date.
“This video was created as an official response to the Newsweek article calling Grand Rapids a ‘dying city.’ We disagreed strongly, and wanted to create a video that encompasses the passion and energy we all feel is growing exponentially, in this great city. We felt Don McLean's ‘American Pie,’ a song about death, was in the end, triumphant and filled to the brim with life and hope."Whether you like the song or not, and whether or not you like lip-dub videos, you have to admit the production is pretty awesome. If they can harvest some of the spirit shown in the video, their city is unlikely to die.
There’s a short video on the making of the lip-dub, and another on rehearsals—as if we couldn’t guess that a lot of work goes into such things.