Last Friday, a perplexing but delightful video of lip-synching eighties and nineties stars delighted the Internet: Peter Falk! Tonya Harding! Alfonso Ribeiro! Glenn Close? Why did you all agree to stand together on a CGI beach and sing "Let It Be," we all wondered, and who picked all these randoms? The video itself offered little explanation — just a few clips from "Gylne Tider," a Norwegian TV show — and its official version was removed from YouTube almost as quickly as it appeared. Then David Faustino, one of the video's stars, claimed he was tricked into participating at a red-carpet event. What? The mystery was too much, so Vulture tracked down Gylne Tider’s host, Øyvind Mund, over e-mail to clear things up.
How did you choose the celebrities in the video? Will they all be featured on your show?
The aim of the series is to track down "old heroes" from the eighties and nineties. Celebrities we maybe haven't seen for a while, but who meant a lot to us back in the day. This is the fourth season of the series, and the second one to look at celebrities from all over the world. The celebrities are chosen from a Norwegian point of view, based on TV series, movies, artists, sports legends that made a big impact in Norway. The small editorial staff’s personal views and opinions are a central part of the process. Not all of the participants were big stars worldwide, but in Norway they were household names — for a shorter or longer period of time. They will all be featured in our show.
Where did the idea come from? You've done a similar video before, set to "We Are the World," right?
It's our idea, and ends the whole series as a nice look back on all the celebrities we got to meet during the season.
How did you film it, with so many celebrities involved? Were any of them actually singing?
We filmed it on green screen, and the idea was to have everyone in the same "universe." They were all singing — so it looks real. But we don't use their voices in our show.
Can you respond to David Faustino's recent accusation that the video was pitched to him as charity effort?
After a long and enjoyable interview with each celebrity, we asked them if they would participate in a fun music video of “Let It Be.” Almost everyone was happy to be a part of it, as the final result shows. It was a charity version of the song, and maybe someone might have misunderstood this. We met Faustino at his home — we didn't steal him from the red carpet.
Why was it taken down from YouTube — and can we expect it back?
We asked them to take the video down. The series uses extensive archive material from many different sources — approved only for airing on TV 2 in Norway. The "Let It Be" element leaked to YouTube, and we asked them to take it down because of the copyright issues and also in consideration of our relations with the contributors.
Did you realize that it would be such a big hit? People went nuts for it.
We are really shocked. It's not every day a Norwegian TV show gets this kind of attention.