Once upon a time, a pop star named Britney Spears released a ballad titled "Perfume" off her eighth studio album. She filmed a music video for it, but thanks to a last minute edit, the video her fans saw was watered down and basic.
Director Joseph Kahn said of the original treatment:
"It sucks, especially since my director’s cut is an entirely different video. The released edit is missing half of the story and all of the editorial structure. It took a lot of serious salvaging of footage to get it to an acceptable place after the concept was gutted. It’s like watching people pet a shaved, bald, declawed cat. I don’t gain any satisfaction from people liking work I did that’s heavily compromised... If they liked the weak version, I’d bet they’d love the strong one. No one knows what they’re missing, and they’re missing a lot."
It was unclear exactly WHAT happened in the original, but rumor had it Brit Brit killed off the male lead and his chick on the side. Now the original video storyline, including alleged leaked screen caps showing a bruised and beat up Britney (some believe these are shopped) is online:
Britney meets a guy with whom she falls instantly in love. It's made clear to the audience that Britney is an assassin/hitman as we see her kill a group of people in a car (hence the gun pictures that were leaked to the media). She is given her next assignment who turns out to be the guy she fell in love with at the beginning of the video. The go to meet in their favorite spot, but Britney is not there. She is across the street with a rifle with her target set on him. She looks through the scope and sees her man holding a ring her made for her. She leaves and aborts the mission to kill him. She leaves town because she knows she is not safe around him. Doing this, she knows she will be killed for abandoning her mission to kill this guy. She hides out in a hotel and is taken by other assassins and beaten, tied to a chair, etc. She has sacrificed herself for this man. We see time pass as he dates a new girl, gets married, has a baby, etc. We see him looking out a window thinking about Britney, his true love that disappeared. Then, we see Britney on the floor of her hotel room, barely alive, as her body slowly turns to ash. The last shot of Britney is the hotel room is her smiling as their eyes seem to meet. Her body then disintegrates. The final shot of the video is Britney and her lover kissing in the sunset.
They turned the video into a cheating scandal rather than it's true storyline exploring the idea of sacrifice because her team thought it would put a lot of media attention on Britney that would be negative. Mainly because of the killing scenes.
Why do they keep insisting on playing it safe? Britney's career was founded on controversy and taking risks...