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With his coronation song “Home” already certified gold (500,000 singles sold) and on track to move another 200,000 downloads this week, American Idol season 11 winner Phillip Phillips‘ picked the perfect time to release the video for his first legit hit. After all, not only did he win the country’s most-watched singing competition, but he also got prime placement on the 2012 Olympics. As the soundtrack to NBC’s coverage of women’s gymnastics, “Home” was heard by as many as one billion people and is already gaining momentum on the charts.
As for the video, the clip was directed by UK-born Joseph Toman (Nicole Scherzinger, Timbaland) and shot over three days while on the road with the Idol summer tour — Denver to Salt Lake City, to be exact. Premiered on Aug. 2, it interweaves stunning black-and-white imagery of American landscapes with footage of Phillips jamming on the tour bus and in a pawn shop not unlike the one his family owns in Leesburg, Georgia.
“When I met Phillip, we vibed about making something that was genuine,” Toman tells The Hollywood Reporter. “This was really the main inspiration for the piece: make something that felt real and show people who Phillip really is. After being in such a mainstream spotlight for so many months, this felt important.” Equally vital, adds the director, was to give a sense of journey, both for the viewer and the star. “The idea of feeling home, at peace, even when you can’t actually be ‘home.’ “
Also seen in the video is Phillips’ longtime girlfriend, Hannah Blackwell, who is a semi-regular presence on the tour. Asked about female fans who may be irked to learn that their favorite singer is taken, Phillips told reporters, “If girls like me because I’m cute, and then don’t like me when they find out I have a girlfriend or something, then it wasn’t about the music. I’d rather be all about the music.”
If Idol loyalists and Interscope Records execs have their way, Phillips will be all of the above. This week, “Home” re-enters the Billboard Hot 100 chart and has a good chance of reaching the Top 20.
Phillips is scheduled to perform the song on the Today show on Aug. 28 and on Live With Kelly this Sept. 4.
Watch the “Home” video below:
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