After wrecking his car a young rock star is haunted by memories of his sister and the whirlwind that led him to this point and decides to break free.



A dark winding road over-looking L.A. A car has skidded off the road and smashed into a pole. As the song begins we pull back to find our “HERO”, dazed and confused, crumpled on the side of the road. He is “glammed out” in rock-star clothes and wears a strange masquerade-type mask. Intercut a quick tight shot of the drummer’s hands keeping the rhythmic beat. As our hero sits, hand to his face, we see the sea of glittering city lights below. More tight shots of the band for the first short instrumental break. No faces.


We cut to an angelic young woman appearing in a bright doorway of a dark bar watching our hero nurse a drink. He turns to look at her and we push right into the eyehole of his mask to find him riding in the back of a limo surrounded by screaming fans. He hops out of the limo and disappears into the crowd, willfully autographing a barrage of CD covers shoved in his face. Through the mass of CD covers, we dissolve into his sister’s face literally mouthing the words “Don’t Forget Sister. She stands in the window of a nice home. We slam into more shots of the band, now picking up the tempo. The shots are wider but they are silhouetted. We don’t really know where the band is.

We return to our protagonist as he floats through a party full of beautiful people wearing the same masks, in some posh residence overlooking L.A. No one notices him, like he’s a ghost. He could literally be floating perhaps on a dolly or something. This is a music video, so we can make it as fantastical as we want. He touches his face and finds blood. We now realize he’s back in the present at the scene of the accident. Flashing red lights approach and then we find him asleep in some kind of jail cell. We move in close and dissolve again to a vision of his sister. He opens his eyes but she’s not there. Back to the band, still in silhouette.


We find our protagonist as he is led through a crowd of paparazzi peppering him with questions. He jumps in a limo and speeds away. It is at this point that he makes his decision. He rips off his mask, revealing his true self…it’s Lucas behind that mask! I should point out that this is where the song goes from the third person to the first person sung by Lucas. He jumps out of the Limo and sprints off, ripping off his rock star clothes (well…maybe just his fur-lined coat and some jewelry). Cut to Lucas singing his heart out with the band, now fully lit in broad daylight as emotion builds, Back to our hero thumbing a ride. Back to the band. Back to Lucas running through a small town cemetery. We wonder…is his sister dead? But no, he keeps on running and ends up at a house. His sister comes out and they embrace. As they spin around we match dissolve to them as kids, big sister and little brother. The band, rejoicing with emotion, “woo-hoo!”. The kids, running, chasing, even dancing to the music. We end with a big wide shot of the band playing full tilt to the end.


The video would go from dark, muted colors (except the blood), mostly claustrophobic shots, then progress to brighter, warmer, wide epic shots. This would be true of both the narrative and the band performance threaded through. I thought of David Lynch’s “Mulholland Drive” in the beginning and “The Straight Story” in the end.


The most important thing to me is for the audience to feel something while watching, not get bogged down trying to follow the story. At first, I considered having the sister died at the end. I was heading that direction while storyboarding the protagonist running through the cemetery, but then I thought – what if he keeps on going instead and we find his sister isn’t dead after all? It gives a nice twist I think. It’s certainly open to interpretation but to me, it’s a song that starts dark and melancholy and progresses to joy and celebration and yes, a happy ending.


Karl Shefelman Copy It's All a Masquerade - Don't Forget Sister - 1
Karl Shefelman
New York, NY




Other Projects (1)


A dramatic, suspenseful adventure film about some American Embassy kids who face life-threatening conditions when an African camping trip goes terribly wrong.