Two puppies fall in love in the most adorable, unexpected ways on the music video of Sponge Cola’s “Labis-labis”—out now on YouTube. Showcasing unadulterated romance from the perspective of pets, the visual narrative steps into the world of meet-cute and courtship between two-year-old poodle, Alex and six-year-old mixed breed aspin, Jamie.
According to guitarist Armo Armovit, the romantic comedy-inspired story pays tribute to the unconditional loyalty and friendship that their pets have given them through the years. “We all have pets and love them very dearly, and this is our way of saying thanks.” Vocalist and guitarist Yael Yuzon shares the same sentiment, honoring the dogs that have been with them through thick and thin. “My dogs have been taking care of me. It makes sense to pay tribute to Mini Me and Finny Finn Finn.”
The music video of “Labis-labis” is directed by Robin Estargo, whose great passion for storytelling not only exceeded expectations, but also handled the material well with the right balance of effervescent wit and heartwarming appeal. “It was a treat (pun intended) working with Robin and the entire KeepFilming Inc. crew,” said drummer Tedmark Cruz. “Their creativity, passion, and professionalism were evident in all the pre-prod meetings over Zoom, up until the post prod finishing touches.”
Yuzon echoes Cruz’s statement, adding how giddy and excited Robin and the KeepFilming team were, during the storyboard discussion. “It’s always nice to work with people who are passionate about their work. The belief in the love story between the two dogs was intense from the very start, and it was contagious and inspiring.”
Having experienced shooting several video projects involving dogs, Estargo and his production team know how challenging it is to pull off a compelling narrative that features pets as main casts. “Working with one dog can be quite draining, so what more two? It’s like working with toddlers! We have to adjust to their moods all the time and treat them with utmost patience.”
Despite the difficulty during the filmmaking process, the team was lucky to cast two dogs that specifically met the criteria they were looking for: “Number one most definitely is that they have to be trained dogs that can do a few or even more tricks,” Estargo shares. “Second, they have to be smaller in size so they’d be easier to handle on set. And third, the dogs should be familiar with each other offhand – and much better if they have the same trainer or owner, so we won’t have a problem on set as these dogs work with each other. We were looking for one aspin and one with a certain breed.”
Aldo Vidal, a 63-year-old dog trainer for 26 years, submitted an audition video for his two dogs through his daughter, and the rest as they say, is history. “We definitely made the right decision in casting their dogs because they are not just a joy to work with and Sir Aldo, as their owner, has also been so accommodating and giving during the shoot,” Estargo tells in a statement. “He worked hard to make sure we got the takes we wanted and exuded that positive and endearing dad vibes that we all loved.”