Natascha Bessez & Mike Johnson on Making Music Video Magic Together: 'We Had Instant Chemistry'
“I had been dreaming about this moment for so long,” says Natascha Bessez, discussing the anticipation she felt leading up to Wednesday’s release of the music video for her latest single, “Mula to La Luna.”
The “Bachelor Presents: Listen to Your Heart” contestant dropped the pulsating dance track — featuring shimmering production from FIGHT CLVB — on April 2. Days later, the pop songstress revealed that its visual component would star another beloved figure within Bachelor Nation: Mike Johnson.
“I had been following Mike for a while,” Natascha tells BachelorNation.com in an exclusive interview. “It’s safe to say I had a little crush. I knew I wanted him to play my love interest in the ‘Mula to La Luna’ video.”
Adds Mike, “When she reached out, there was no hesitation at all. I knew we could make something great together.”
The sexy clip — which included scenes so steamy some had to be cut from the final edit, Natascha notes — sees the pair embark on a romantic road trip across Southern California. Natascha and Mike’s attraction for each other becomes too much to bear and their car ride quickly turns into a sensual romp involving front-seat lap dances and, subsequently, “very irresponsible” driving. Eventually, the gorgeous duo retreat to a motel room to unleash their desires.
“I was in love when I wrote this song. Ultimately, it’s about feeling so rich in love that nothing else matters. We have everything we need in each other, so why not throw our money to the moon? ‘Mula to la luna!’” Natascha explains. “In the song, I sing, ‘We don’t need no money for no jewelers. I’m your queen, you’re my king.’ Doing this with Mike by my side, I definitely felt like royalty.”
Below, Natascha and Mike chat more with BachelorNation.com about their exciting project — and tease whether a real-life romance is on the horizon.
How did this Bachelor Nation crossover come to be?
Natascha: I needed someone who had a boss-man appeal to play my man in this video. It couldn’t just be some pretty boy who’s going to sit there and look sweet. He needed to have an attitude. He needed to be able to handle the song itself — because “Mula to La Luna” is a sexy-ass song. It needed to be someone who can portray that vibe and that energy. I had reached out to my modeling agency back in New York and they had sent me a lot of great guys — but none of them fit the bill. I’m fiery in the video and I needed someone to be like, “That’s my girl and I don’t care how fiery she is. I got it under control.” Enter Mike Johnson. I reached out to him and he was so humble and so sweet and so kind and was like, “When do we start?” There were no questions.
Mike, what was your initial reaction to Natascha’s request to be in the video?
Mike: I’m a Bachelor Nation boy with a little bit of habanero spice to me. So, when Natascha hit me up, I was extremely elated and knew I had to be a part of it. I wanted to make her feel great. Throughout the entire process, my thoughts were: “I am your muse, Natascha. Tell me what you want me to do. You’re the artist. I refuse to make anything less for you.” I was really excited for that.
With so many guys to choose from within Bachelor Nation, why did you go for Mike, Natascha?
Natascha: I’m not your all-American girl. I am Latina and I do have an edge to me. There are a lot of very cute, very sweet boys in Bachelor Nation, but I really needed someone who was more on my level. I needed a man who can appreciate the fact that I speak my mind and am very open. I’m very what-you-see-is-what-you-get. The song is hot and so is Mike. It’s really that simple.
Your chemistry is palpable in the video. Was there any acting involved?
Mike: I mean, we’re looking at Natascha here. Do you know how easy it is to get in a sexy vibe with her, for me to portray her love interest, and throw my money to the moon?
Natascha: We had instant chemistry. And because of that, it was one of the easiest videos I’ve ever done. I’ve had love interests in my previous videos, but nothing ever felt as natural as it did with Mike. Instant attraction. Instant excitement. It was just so much fun. He had me laughing the entire time. Every time he’d say something, I’d just swoon and ask myself, “Oh, God, what did I get myself into?”
Mike: There was definitely no acting on my side.
Natascha: I don’t know how good of an actor Mike is. I’m not an actress myself. I’m very much someone who goes for my natural feelings. There wasn’t any choreography to these scenes. It was however we felt. It was just a direction. The poor videographer was just like, “OK, guys, cut!” (Laughs) Every time I watch it, my jaw is on the floor. There was actually a lot that had to be cut out because it was just a little too hot.
Oh, really? Tell us more. What scenes didn’t make the final cut?
Natascha: I would say a lot of the scenes got cut out of the motel room portion because we really went for it there. The song pressed play and we went in on each other. We had to stop ourselves a few times. Mike’s like, “You told me to go for it!” And I’m like, “Yes, but we are shooting a different kind of video here.” (Laughs) I don’t think anyone is going to ever see those scenes. I think those are just for me and Mike.
Natascha, you served as the video’s co-director alongside Luke Strege. Was it empowering for you to be at the helm of so many sexy scenes?
Natascha: It was! When I explained to Mike what I wanted and needed, I said, “You’re going to have to get real personal with me real fast.” There was definitely tension and chemistry and excitement. There were parts where I’d be like, “Mike, grab me here. Mike, don’t grab me there. Mike, do this and that.” And Mike complied to it all. He was a good sport. The only real direction I gave Mike was just, “Give it to me.” And he gave it! He sure gave it.
Mike: Let me add that there’s a lot of female empowerment in this video. There’s a scene — which is my favorite scene — where she pushes me on the bed in the motel room and it’s just perfectly in time with the beat of the song. For the women watching this video, I think they will subconsciously feel strength. I think that Natascha did a great job with that.
Natascha, do you have favorite scene in the music video?
Natascha: There are so many great parts. It’s so hard for me to name just one. There is a part where I’m dancing solo — but also for Mike — in the desert at nighttime. There are lots of sparkles and implied nudity. It’s very J.Lo and Shakira, very Britney Spears in “Toxic.” That part is very me. I’m not a grunge girl. I’m a glitter girl, a glam girl. Yes, I’m in the desert, but I’m also basically naked and covered in crystals. I was freezing shooting that scene — but the best part was that there was so much natural wind I didn’t even need a fan to get my hair blowing. Mike was shining his iPhone light on me to make me sparkle even more. It was amazing.
Mike: It was so sexy, I’m not gonna lie.
Were there any challenges filming this video?
Natascha: For sure. At one point, we actually got kicked out of the desert park where I was filming the sparkly dance moment. We only had one or two shots of that scene because, as soon as I started getting the hang of it, the sheriff comes and he’s like, “You’ve gotta get out of here!”
Mike: He was such an ass.
Natascha: He was! I was like, “Don’t you see we’re just trying to make magic here?”
Mike: Like, sit here and watch the show right quick, bro.
Did you get to hang out together when filming wasn’t in progress?
Natascha: Oh, yeah. Mike flew to Los Angeles from his home in Austin, Texas, so we wanted to make the most of it. We filmed just a little while back over the course of three days in Joshua Tree. I was able to host Mike for a couple days, which was really nice. I rented a big Airbnb and we had some fun there. We filmed a little bit there at the house but also had a lot of fun just hanging out together. I really enjoyed our time together on- and off-camera.
Could “Mula to La Luna” be the catalyst for a real-life romance between you two?
Natascha: Mike, I’ll let you go first.
Mike: Well, normally, I like to be a gentleman and let ladies go first but, in this case, I’ll be a gentleman and listen to Natascha and I’ll go first. I would say there is definitely a “to be continued” for us after this video.
Natascha: You’ve got to start somewhere. I didn’t pick Mike for no reason, you know what I mean? There are a lot of boys I could’ve picked and there was definitely a very large reason why Mike was a part of this and why he accepted my invitation to be in it. So, you never know. I’ll always follow my heart.
Natascha, how does “Mula to La Luna” stack up to the rest of your videography?
Natascha: It’s unlike anything I’ve ever, ever done before. With every video I make, I just get more creative. And this one really tells a story. It felt like a road trip with the love of my life, not realizing that there was a camera, and we were just going for it. And Mike has this magnetic personality that made the experience so much fun and that much more enjoyable. He keeps telling me, “So for the next video, we’re going to do this and this and this.” I’m like, “Calm down, calm down.”
Mike, what was it like experiencing Natascha’s artistry up close and personal?
Mike: It’s amazing to watch someone so talented do what they love to do. This is Natascha’s passion, and she is an incredible artist. She’s cares deeply about her work in every aspect. She’s a powerful woman and a total boss. Everything that she did for the video — both in front of and behind the camera — inspired me in ways that are hard to describe. It was magical, really.
Natascha: Aw, Mike, that was so sweet. How did I get so lucky?
Mike: How did I get so lucky? That’s the real question.