Now and Then: The Backstreet Boys


“Now and Then” finds us chatting with artists about the breadth of their careers. They explain their latest video and then comment on one of their classic clips.

In our first installment, we get cozy on the couch with the Backstreet Boys. Their new disc Unbreakable just dropped, so we dug up the dirt behind the making of the video for “Inconsolable.” Then we took a trip down memory lane with their spooktastic video for 1997’s “Everybody (Backstreet’s Back).”

Brian: This was originally supposed to be shot in a city during a solar eclipse, but we translated it to the beach. Everybody’s raving about my house in this video. It’s cool, because it’s right on the beach, but it was all concrete, and so not me. Not my style.

AJ: This is my second time in a car. With “Incomplete” I was in an old vintage car. I think we have to stop with the old vintage cars. This particular car had no breaks, so I couldn’t go very fast.

Nick: This pier is where I first learned how to surf. It’s in Venice — WashingtonPier.

AJ: Howie actually used my iPhone for his scenes, and he accidentally dialed my girlfriend. He must have called her about five times. She could hear him singing to himself.

Howie: The director had this vision, introducing everyone individually. I remember thinking, “What if this comes on TRL and they only see two guys?” We went along with the idea, because it’s not the traditional boy band thing — it gives us our own time, and you learn each of our characters.

Howie: Watching this is like looking back at your senior yearbook. This is Oscar-winning dialogue.

Brian: We had to argue with the label, becuase they wouldn’t give us the money for the video. We ended up spending about a half million dollars.

AJ: This was back during my hip-hop phase. You won’t catch me in [those clothes] ever again. Now I wear pants that fit. Maybe a little too good.

Nick: There was this one girl in the video — I was way too young for her, and I was trying so hard to hit on her. She was like, “That’s cute, little boy.”

Brian: We had an idea to take the “Thriller” video and do it in a group sense. We all picked [monster] characters that were our favorites.

AJ: Everyone knows I love Phantom of the Opera. I’m a die-hard fan. Someday I’ll be the phantom on Broadway.

Brian: This is the video where in the final shot I’m screwing up the choreography. I miss the last few moves. I was so mad — I was like a little kid pouting.

AJ: This is one of those videos that no matter how far down the road we go, we pioneered videos for groups like us.

Can’t get enough of Backstreet? Tune in this Saturday at 9 am to watch the Boys on Top 20 Video Countdown.

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