Dead Poets Society actors star in new Taylor Swift music video

Ethan Hawke and Josh Charles, who starred in 1989's Dead Poets Society alongside Robin Williams feature in the new music video for Fortnight.

Dead Poets Society stars Ethan Hawke and Josh Charles feature in new Taylor Swift music video Fortnight PA Media

The new music video for Taylor Swift’s lead single Fortnight stars US actors Ethan Hawke and Josh Charles from the classic film Dead Poets Society, which was released in 1989 – the number for which Swift has a special affinity.

The US pop superstar surprised her fans on Friday by releasing a secret “double album” instalment of her new record The Tortured Poets Department, which appears to be filled with references to her recent romances.

The 11th studio album from the singer-songwriter became Spotify’s most-streamed album in a single day, while Swift also became the most-streamed artist in a single day in Spotify history, the platform said.

A day after the first 16-song album dropped and the 15-song The Anthology record was released, Swift unveiled the first music video for her single featuring US rapper and singer Post Malone.

The video appears to tell the tale of star-crossed lovers set in a dystopian romance.

It begins with Swift waking up in a white gown chained to a bed in a wrong-side-up asylum, before cutting to the singer wiping her face to reveal tattoos etched on her skin.

She later walks into an office-like room filled with typewriters wearing a black ensemble, finding Post Malone. The duo embrace on a lone highway and are caught in a tornado of loose paper.

The pair then lay down on the paper which forms an outline of a face, with fans speculating it is similar to a face seen in the music video for her 2014 track Style, which seemingly references her former relationship with British star Harry Styles.

Later in the video, Swift is strapped to an electrotherapy chair where Hawke and Charles appear as scientists sporting white lab coats with embroidered names referencing their Dead Poets Society characters.

Hawke starred as Todd Anderson in the 1989 Oscar-winning film, alongside Charles as Knox Overstreet, with the cast also including late acting great Robin Williams as John Keating.

1989 is the fifth studio album from Swift and also marks the year she was born.

“I’m still laughing from getting to work with the coolest guys on earth, Ethan Hawke and Josh Charles (tortured poets, meet your colleagues from down the hall, the dead poets),” Swift wrote on social media.

She continued: “When I was writing the Fortnight music video, I wanted to show you the worlds I saw in my head that served as the backdrop for making this music.

“Pretty much everything in it is a metaphor or a reference to one corner of the album or another.

“For me, this video turned out to be the perfect visual representation of this record and the stories I tell in it.”

The video features a black dog aimlessly walking around the science lab, which could be a reference to her track The Black Dog.

Swift said that Post Malone “blew me away on set as our tortured tragic hero”, and she also praised “unfathomably brilliant” cinematographer Rodrigo Prieto and her team of “dream collaborators”.

Earlier this year, Post Malone appeared as part of the astrology council in Jennifer Lopez’s film This Is Me… Now: A Love Story, alongside Jane Fonda, Kim Petras, and Keke Palmer; while he also featured on Beyonce’s country album Cowboy Carter, duetting on Levii’s Jeans.

British group Florence + The Machine also joined Swift on her 11th studio album, with the two collaborating on a track called Florida!!!

Lead singer Florence Welch said on Instagram: “Me and my ghosts we had a hell of a time @taylorswift. Honoured to be in this department.”

Swift’s friend and long-term collaborator, music producer Jack Antonoff, also praised the album.

“Love this album more than I can say…. love you all very much… more later very overwhelmed… love you Taylor,” he wrote on X, formerly Twitter.

Swift, who is known for taking inspiration from past relationships for her music, seemingly references her break-up with British actor Joe Alwyn and The 1975 star Matty Healy in lyrics throughout the album.

Meanwhile, fans have also speculated a number of her tracks reference her blossoming romance with NFL star Travis Kelce.

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