Article – Billboard


Dima Bilan – Against The Rules

I am sitting wearing headphones in the Turkish hotel room and listening to my duet with Anastacia. I met this legendary singer first on one private event two years ago. I felt in total ecstasy back then and jumped to her on stage, and then we improvised several songs from her repertoire together. She made a very strong impression on me, and it even seemed to me that we shared the same biofield. Our meeting didn't just happened by chance...

When I fell in love with the "Safety" song written by the famous Evan Bogart and Luke Busby, that had worked with Beyoncι, Pussycat Dolls and other famous musicians, I decided that it would be great to sing that song as a duet with a good singer. And I immediately thought of Anastacia. She would complete the image connected to that song, that I had already pictured in my mind, perfectly well.

My confidence in the correct choice has been further strengthened by the fact that she also appreciated the track and even said that the song could become a hit. We started working on it in May, in L. A.

Anastacia arrived to Moscow on June,9th for the Muz-TV awards show. I considered meeting Anastacia at the airport as my personal duty, and I was right in my choice – despite the fact that she had to take a truly long flight, Anastacia was in high spirits. However, there were only two days left before the Muz-TV awards, and therefore she had no time to rest and get used to the atmosphere [of Moscow]. Speaking about me, I was touring at the same time.

The infernal pain made me crazy
and sometimes it cut my eyes, I couldn't control myself

When the Muz-TV awards took place, the weather was quite cloudy: it seemed as if my request was filled by the natural forces – I wanted it to be rainy. There was a rush on the red carpet. It's quite funny to remember how the girl that was hosting a show literally lost her ability to speak when she saw Anastacia – she just shook her hands, not knowing what to say. I introduced the singer [Anastacia] to my Moscow fan-club, the guys from the fan-club tried their best to make me feel happy and gave me self-made awards from the show in ALL the categories.

I have always admired free and opened people, and Anastacia is one of such people. She amazes everyone with her goodwill and a great sense of humour. During the ceremony she managed to fit perfectly in the Russian flavor, yet retaining her endless mystery.

As usual, the show was spectacular! We performed right after I got an award for the "Best singer". I had to run all over the "Olympic" 4 times – on stage, and then behind the stage. A real action live!

And in just two days I was already in the place where the video for "Safety" was being shot. We had to spend there the crazy 20 hours of a non-stop work. The director of the video was Pavel Hudyakov – a famous videomaker, who directed a video for my song "Believe" as well. During making the video, I yet again realized how many positive emotions and restraint this amazing and gorgeous singer [Anastacia] has, and how she works in a total harmony. She follows the process of shooting quickly and clearly – in other words, she is a true professional. I think that by viewing our scenes, people could think as if we had known each other and had been working together for our entire lives. We could feel every move of each other and it seemed that we could hear thoughts of each other.

A few days before the shoot, me and Anastacia changed the script. At first the script was the following: I was a blind musician, and she had her mission to help me to get my vision back. We decided to move further, thinking that this script was too simple. But it turned out that this script nearly became prophetic! At night, when we literally had a few scenes left, I decided to lay down and get some rest for 20 minutes. Too bad I did it. I felt asleep under a bright spotlight and got my retina [of both eyes] scorched.

A terrible pain in my eyes was driving me insane, I couldn't handle myself well. I literally lost my eyesight and we had to stop the shooting. Doctors absolutely refused to let me continue working on the video. The pain not only didn't get better – it only got worse. In the end, it became totally clear that the trauma was serious, and I had to be rushed into a hospital. Speaking honestly, I've never felt something like this before. I was lying in a cold sweat, I could hear voices of different doctors around me, but I couldn't see them – I only "felt" that they were near. I was absolutely terrified. However somewhere deep in my soul I believed everything would be alright: I didn't sign the contract to play stories with a bad ending!

I can now hardly remember the tiny details... I remembered when I was being taken to the hospital and then how the doctors were near me - there is nothing more I can remember. In such moments you feel so defenseless, all you have to do is believe the doctors and let them do their thing. Right now things are getting better and I am coming back to the normal state of my health, however I still have no time to fully rest. I need to do certain things, and connecting it with the rest is very difficult. But I am thankful to God that everything ended this way.

The video must be fantastic! It has a real variety of feelings and emotions, and I am sure that we can bring the color to the tiniest tones of emotions, that were describing our feelings. And, believe it or not, we would be able to bring the whole multi-colored palette of all different moods and sights.