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World of WarCrafts: Get Lich or Die Tryin' (NSFW)


WARNING: This video is Not Safe for Work (NSFW). The track features profanity-laced lyrics typical of the music's genre. If this offends you, don't watch this movie.

World of WarCrafts spotlights art and creativity by WoW players, including fan art, cooking, comics, cosplay, music and fan fiction. Show us how you express yourself; contact our tips line (attention: World of WarCrafts) with your not-for-profit, WoW-inspired creations.

Remember our quirky friend from Christmas 2008, the ever-memorable Jolly Ol' Saint Arthalas? Just in time for the push into Icecrown Citadel, he's back with the premiere of his pumping new music video, Get Lich or Die Tryin'. "This track is so ice cold, it's going to be measured in Kelvin," claims creator Adam C. Beamish (aka Althallen of US Executus). "The Lich King isn't alone, either. Flanked by the two baddest emcees in all of Northrend and backed by a room full of zombies, this is the Lich King like you've never seen him before."

Feeling the beat? WoW.com is giving away two of the T-shirts worn by Arthas' emcees in the video. Check out our separate giveaway post for a chance to win a "Get Lich or Die Tryin'" or "Saurfang & Putricide ..." boss names T-shirt, and follow us past the break for a behind-the-scenes look at the making of this Arthravaganza.
World of WarCrafts: Where on earth did the idea for this video come from?

Adam C. Beamish: The seed for this video was planted well over a year ago as I wrapped up with the Arthas costume. I thought it turned out really well, but I was determined to squeeze a bit more life out of it. My cohorts and I were brainstorming things that would be funny to have Arthas do, like ride the bus or grocery shop. I don't think this process is particularly special or unique; everyone has ideas like these. They're the stupid things that you joke about with your friends -- only in my case, we say "This is really funny; we should run with it," so we did.

Sounds like a project that took quite a bit of time in the making.

The gears started turning back in August and September with some early writing and pre-production, but after that things stagnated for a while. We picked it up again in late November, determined that we'd make this happen before the Frozen Throne encounter was unlocked. We just finished the final edit last week, so we made it just in the nick of time. From start to where we are today, I'd say 10 weeks would be a conservative estimate.

And it's still not done! I'm still working on a mini-site for the launch of the video. In the weeks to come, I want to release some behind-the-scenes footage, and I'm also talking with a few local DJs about remixing the track.

How many people were involved in the project?

We had about 30 people involved in some form or another. Most of them were friends, or friends of friends, who showed up to help out. Some of them, like our makeup artists, were specialists that I conscripted for the project. And a few of them, notably the boardroom zombies, were strangers who answered a couple of the open casting calls I posted online. Never underestimate the magic of the internet ... especially when it pertains to zombies.
What was the extent of your own involvement?

I fancy myself somewhat of a jack of all trades, so it would probably be easier to list the things I didn't have my hands in. My focus was primarily creative, writing lyrics and scripting the video -- not alone, mind you. But I chased that with a healthy dose of coordination, liaising between the video, audio and creative people, as well as scheduling locations and renting equipment. And any time there was a gap that we couldn't find anyone for, I usually filled in. So yeah, that's me singing the "cold as ice" hook. And doing the narration at the start. And doing the ghoul sound effects ...

Did you have to seek out help for certain aspects of the project, such as audio or video?

The downside to being a self-styled jack of all trades is that you don't do any one thing particularly well. This is good in the initial stages of a project, like writing or producing demos or mapping out storyboards. But in order to take it any much further, you need help from people who actually know what they're doing. Lots of it.

Case in point, I had produced a beat that we used as a backing track to write and record our lyrics. It was passable at best, and for a long time it was going to be the audio we used in the final video, for lack of a better alternative. But in the end, I managed to recruit Steve Witt, a friend of mine who just so happens to be a recording school graduate. He took the reins with all the final beat and vocal production and mixing, and it's his handiwork that you're listening to in the video. If you compare my track and his side by side, there's no contest; Steve's beat blows mine out of the water.

What of the tasks involved in creating this project were completely new and foreign to you at the outset?

Coordinating a production like this was an entirely new experience for me. While I'm no stranger to special interest projects, I'm a disorganized procrastinator on my best days. It's usually sheer fervor that carries me through a project, and things I've worked on in the past have generally been fairly narrow in scope and can be pulled off solo, or with a handful of help.

But this video was another thing entirely. There were locations to scout and book, talent to coordinate, scripts to write, edits to review, costumes to acquire, equipment to rent ... I wasn't even necessarily the one doing all these things, but I needed to make sure they got done.

Who else would you like to give credit to for the production?

First and foremost, I want to give credit to James Van Der Woerd, the director, as well as all of the guys on James' crew. Andrew Milne and Ian Sinclair, my partners in rhyme and co-conspirators for the whole project. Jenn Topp and Whitney Heirwegh, whose makeup and prosthetics were particularly chilling. Steve Witt, our audio producer, who took time to perfect the beat, although I heard he still got love for the street. Jess Derventzis, for finding us a place to actually shoot the video. And my girlfriend Whitney, who not only helped keep the project on track but is also my perma-party member and all-around savage DPS. There are more, of course. Too many to list here, but I'd be remiss if I didn't give a shout out to Bothi Bronzemoon of Ropetown on Executus, and any other former members of Blink.

So what do you do, Adam, when you're not playing WoW or coming up with WoW-related projects? What's your creative background?

I graduated from university back in April, so I've just recently entered the working world. So far it's been sucking up most of my days, but that hasn't stopped me from working on creative projects. Whether it's a simple t-shirt design or a mammoth production like this video, I'm really just trying to build a solid portfolio of work. I have a lot of ideas and semi-formed plans for future projects ranging from a clothing brand, to a constrained-creativity blogging platform, to a cosplay photography studio. Ultimately, I want to build a career that allows me to fuse art and design with science and technology.

What's going to become of the infamous Arthas wig and costume?

The costume and wig are back in storage, for now. The belt sustained some major wear and tear during the course of the shoot, so I'll have to address it at some point. I had a few ideas for really elaborate additions to the costume that I'd love to work on, some day. If I ever get around to making them, I'd love to take it all to the BlizzCon costume contest.

Be sure to visit our giveaway post and leave a comment there to be entered for a chance to win a Get Lich or Die Tryin' T-shirt.

World of WarCrafts spotlights art and creativity by WoW players, including fan art, cooking, comics, cosplay, music and fan fiction. Show us how you express yourself by contacting our tips line (attention: World of WarCrafts); not-for-profit work only, please.

Filed under: Interviews, World of WarCrafts

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