Behind the scenes of the Detroit's 'Move the World' Amazon pitch video

Posted at 10:28 PM, Oct 23, 2017
and last updated 2017-10-24 08:33:57-04

Last week, Detroit sent off its bid for Amazon along with a new promotional hype video meant to illuminate itself as the come-back city.

The video, called "Detroit. Move here. Move the world" has gained a lot of fan fare on social media and is already nearing 100,000 views on YouTube. 

The man behind the video, Director Stephen McGee, says he's relieved to hear that, given he had just two weeks to put it together. 

McGee was tapped by Dan Gilbert’s Amazon bid committee to produce the three and half minute video, but it didn't come to fruition until the week it was set to be released. 

"Four days before the video was supposed to be launched, we had no music, no strong visuals and no voice-over talent," McGee said. 

In 36 hours, all of that changed. McGee elicited help from some big Blockbuster names in film-making, and also relied on the content of regional institutions and corporations like the University of Michigan, Michigan State and General Motors. 

McGee showed Channel 7 the behind-the-scenes footage of the helicopter shoots that helped to create the show-stopping images that define the video.  

But what sealed the deal, McGee says, was the voice behind the piece --- internationally acclaimed poet and Detroit native, Jessica Care Moore. He says she brought the "grit" that represents the spirit of the city.

He's heard from several people in Metro Detroit who say the video has made them proud to live here, while others who have left, tell him it makes them want to move back. 

He says what pleases him most is knowing that the video is helping locals view the city they way he sees it -- with lots of beauty and promise. 

"Sometimes it takes a mirror to realize how beautiful you are," he added. 

McGee's work can be followed via Instagram, @stephen_mcgee