T-Pain and Snoop Dogg team up for a “Big Adventure” in the duo’s new video for their collaborative single “That’s How We Ballin.”
The visual, directed by T-Pain himself, recreates a pair of iconic scenes from the cult classic Pee-wee’s Big Adventure, including the video’s opening, a nod to that uproarious scene where the late Paul Reubens (as Pee-wee Herman) has a run-in with biker gang that’s only mollified by the sounds of “Tequila.” This time around, it’s “That’s How We Ballin” that saves T-Pain’s Pee-wee-inspired character from a beatdown.
Snoop Dogg pops up in the last segment of the nearly seven-minute music video to deliver his verse during the nightmarish “Clown Dream” sequence that was also lifted from Big Adventure.
As T-Pain told Rolling Stone, the inspiration for the video came just days before Reubens’ death in July 2023.
“I was on a flight from LA to Atlanta and couldn’t sleep, so I looked for movies to keep me entertained. Pee-wee’s Big Adventure came up and I couldn’t help myself,” T-Pain said. “After watching the movie, I put on my personal headphones to listen to the recent music I had done. ‘That’s How We Ballin’ came on first and I immediately made the connection. I texted my NappyBoy Films crew and let them know ‘We have to do this!’”
The singer-producer added, “What’s crazier is, four days later is when Paul passed away. That was when I knew I had to do this right, which is why it took so long to film, but I feel good that we took our time.”
Eagle-eyed viewers might also notice that one of the bikers grooving out at the bar in the opening is played by Backstreet Boys’ AJ McLean, who stopped by the shoot to film his cameo.
“AJ and I are actually working on a ton of music, and we’ve been in the studio a lot together recently, so of course I had to invite him to the video shoot,” T-Pain told Rolling Stone. “He didn’t hesitate, even with a two-hour drive to get there. He’s a good guy with some good music coming out soon.”
While T-Pain and Snoop Dogg have frequently collaborated over their careers (and recently toured together), “That’s How We Ballin” marks the first time that the rapper has featured on a T-Pain track. The single also arrives following the release of T-Pain’s covers album On Top of the Covers earlier this year.
“At this point in my life, it’s all about fun and enjoying whatever’s in front of me. ‘That’s how we ballin’ is just that, us having fun,” T-Pain added of the single in a statement. “I’ve had all the number 1s, awards, and platinum records I can stand. It’s time to break the rules and let it all hang out. Some people have to leave their lives to go on vacation, but if you love what you do, it’ll never be work! See y’all on the brighter side!”