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'Happy' Video Project Urges Bethesda High School to 'Let Loose'

The video project by Bethesda-based filmmaker Jerry Yue Liu is one of the latest in Pharrell Williams' "Happy" phenomenon.

Students and teachers at Walter Johnson High School in Bethesda showed their "Happy" moves for filmmaker Jerry Liu. Credit: Liu's YouTube video
Students and teachers at Walter Johnson High School in Bethesda showed their "Happy" moves for filmmaker Jerry Liu. Credit: Liu's YouTube video
Bethesda's Walter Johnson High School has the moves. And, it's "Happy" about it.

Filmmaker and Bethesda native Jerry Liu wanted to share the good vibes in his latest video project.

Inspired by pop/hip-hop artist Pharrell Williams’ “Happy” phenomenon, 23-year-old Liu wandered the halls of his alma mater, Walter Johnson High School, with his camera equipment and a smile on his face, asking people to dance to the hit song.

The result is a three-minute and 55-second video showcasing kids in the halls, music room, at graduation -- along with a few parents and teachers.

"It was a big struggle,” Liu said in an earlier interview with Patch. "People in Bethesda hide behind these masks.”

Next up is another set of “Happy” videos for Montgomery County communities, including Rockville, Takoma Park and Silver Spring.

In an earlier video he filmed folks dancing to the tune from areas near the Davis Library to Bethesda Row, and kids and adults of all ages.

Liu chose to jump-start the project in Bethesda to disprove the stereotype of small towns being uptight, he said. Liu ultimately wanted to prove Bethesda could “let loose." 

"We're fools whether we dance or not, so we might as well dance,” he said.

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