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Rita Ora performing an acoustic version of ‘Your Song’ live for Billboard.

10 Things Learned About Beyond the Lights From #DamnNoni

Director Gina Prince-Bythewood took to twitter to talk about her 2014 film Beyond the Lights using the hashtag DamnNoni. Here’s what she revealed:

1. Prince-Bythewood kept Noni’s Union Jack jeans and her black strappy halter from the Masterpiece video. 

2. The final concert was originally set in Glastonbury but festival organizers refused to let the movie film there. 

3. Prince-Bythewood and her crew did not have permission to film along the Mexican/USA border so she and her DoP (Tami Reiker) shot there covertly at 3 in the morning. 

4. Gugu Mbatha-Raw really was the one hanging off the balcony, not a stunt double. 

5. Big Sean auditioned to play Kid Culprit

6. Mbatha-Raw actually cut herself when smashing the glass on Noni’s framed portraits. 

7. After director Lexi Alexander noted that the sleazy music executive played by Tyler Christopher reminded her of a movie executive she knew in real life Prince-Bythewood admitted he was based on a real person.

8. Prince-Bythewood regrets asking Rita Ora to perform Grateful (which was later Oscar nominated) as she refused to promote the song at all. 

9. The scene where Kid Culprit assaults Noni at the BET Awards was originally even more graphic and violent but was cut down by the MPAA

10. Mbatha-Raw had to be lubed into her black and white latex dress.