"Being an outsider in your home is something that I really relate to"

The director of Childish Gambino’s ‘This Is America’ music video has discussed his immigrant experience.

According to the Huffington Post, Japanese-born Hiro Murai, who directed the music video for ‘This Is America’ by Childish Gambino AKA Donald Glover, has revealed his immigrant experience.

Released earlier this month, ‘This Is America’ has been viewed over 74 million times and has been praised for capturing the brutality of the African American experience. In one scene, Glover is seen shooting down a church choir.

Reflecting on working with Glover, whose wider work also focuses on the African American experience in America, Murai said,  “I’m an immigrant and I think being an outsider in your home is something that I really relate to.” 

“I was like, 10 [when I immigrated]. So when Donald was saying how strange it is to be black in America, and how you’re kind of outside of the main conversation in a way, I really related to that in a lot of ways,” he added.

Murai revealed his influences in film include Walt Disney, Hayao Miyazaki, Spike Jones, manga and American comics.

“I thought there was a way of marrying what I wanted to do with filmmaking with pop videos, which I found out through a couple projects just wasn’t possible,” Murai said. “That’s not saying anything about the artist. If you’re making an Usher video, you’re making an Usher video, not a film with an Usher song in it.”

‘This Is America’ is not the first time Murai and Glover have worked together. The pair’s first project was short film Clapping for the Wrong Reasons in 2013. They also both worked on videos for ‘3005’, ‘Sweatpants’ and ‘Telegraph Ave’.

Discussing Glover, Murai said, “in the case of like Childish Gambino, he is someone who is a writer by trade, so he is very meticulous about how he writes his ideas.” 

“I don’t do this with a lot of artist but he would give me a treatment that he wants to do and I’ll go off that, then I’ll give him feedback and pitch him my ideas,” he continued. “But with Childish it feels more like a two-way conversation.”

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