Justin Bieber has just released new music, and for Beliebers everywhere, it’s a miracle. Seven months after dropping Changes, Justin, 26, decided to let the spirit flow through him for “Holy,” a new song with frequent collaborator, Chance The Rapper. Not only that, but it came with a video featuring Star actress and devoted Belieber, Ryan Destiny. Justin and Ryan play a couple hit hard by the current “global situation” — presumably, the coronavirus pandemic — and after losing their jobs and being evicted from their apartment, they are left to wander the street at night. This is where Wilmer Valderrama comes in.
Wilmer, who plays a military member returning home, drives by in his truck when he spots Justin and Ryan’s characters wandering outside. He offers to take them home, and at this point, you’re guaranteed to shed some tears as you soon watch the That ’70s Show star and his guests and family share a meal together.
The music video shows that we can all treat each other with kindness, after 860,000 Americans filed jobless claims, which ABC News reported on Sept. 17. Despite the video’s feel-good message, not everyone was thrilled to see Wilmer star in a video of Justin’s, since the pop star is repped by Scooter Braun (who became the manager of Wilmer’s ex-girlfriend, Demi Lovato, in May of 2019).
“Wtf scooter signed demi if he was going to be that dirty with her?…what planet do you leave on? if you sign a client, the least you can do is to search about their lives…,” one fan tweeted. Another fan thought Wilmer’s cameo was an awkward choice, writing, “Demi not gonna talk to Justin and Scooter for a month cause of Wilmer in that video.” However, we’ve heard that Wilmer — who is now engaged to model Amanda Pacheco — is nothing but happy for Demi’s engagement to Max Ehrich. “Wilmer wishes Demi nothing but the best and is happy to see she’s found someone to share her life with,” a source EXCLUSIVELY told HollywoodLife in July.
Justin first indicated that something was coming on Sept. 11. “ONE WEEK,” he tweeted and shortly changed his Twitter profile pic to a shot of him wearing an oversized pullover/shorts combo while bathed in blue light. The chromatic choice was a complete 180 from his red-hued Changes album. Justin also unveiled JBSoon.com, which allowed fans to pre-save…something. His manager, Scooter, retweeted the announcement, along with the hashtag #newerabegins.
As Justin counted down the days – “SIX DAYS” “FIVE DAYS” “FOUR DAYS” – he finally unveiled the title of the song, as well as the cover art. He also retweeted Chance the Rapper (“I know he made you a snack like Oscar Proud”), indicating that the Chicago native was going to guest on the track. The two had a playful back-and-forth on Twitter in the leadup to the song’s release, leading some to wonder if they were actually previewing the song’s lyrics.”
“Holy” marks yet another collaboration between Chance and Beibs. Chance appeared on Justin’s “Confident” in 2013, on 2016’s “Juke Jam,” and on DJ Khaled’s “I’m The One” in 2017, and his “No Brainer” in 2018.
In addition to these teases, Justin also shared a picture taken by director Alfredo Flores, initially posted to Instagram “Taken on the set of Holy,” Alfredo captioned the shot of a dirt-covered Justin. Judging by Bieber’s outfit – overalls, a white long-sleeve shirt, leather work gloves – and the rustic nature of the single’s artwork, it appeared Justin was going for a more rural, farmland vibe with this track. After Taylor Swift went cottagecore with her folklore release, it wouldn’t be too out of vogue for Justin to also get in touch with nature with this new music.
Justin had planned to spend 2020 on the road, touring in support of his Changes album. Instead, the COVID-19 pandemic kept him at home – and gave him time to work on some new project. During the quarantine, Justin “made an [entirely] new project,” a source told HollywoodLife EXCLUSIVELY at the end of August. “The album will have all new collaborators and the music is already blowing people away.” The insider said that Biebs “already shot music videos and his fans are in for a massive surprise.” Unlike Changes, which Justin has repeatedly said was R&B, this new project is “a pop album, but it’s going to have amazing vocals, incredible stories, really worldwide smashes.”
Unfortunately, “worldwide smash” is not a term that can be used for Changes. The album was met with middling reviews upon its release, with Rolling Stone calling it “sweet and tender” but shallow. “Bieber has the capability to dig deeper into his soul for both joy and pain. It’s high time he tries that out in his music,” wrote RS, and most of the critical world agreed. As of Sept. 2020, the album has a 57 Metacritic score, and sales-wise, it has yet to replicate the success of his previous releases.
While Changes hasn’t pulled in the numbers, Justin won’t leave 2020 without a No. 1 under his belt. His collaboration with Ariana Grande, “Stuck With U,” debuted at the top of the Billboard Hot 100, giving Justin his sixth No. 1 single. Since its release in May, it’s already been certified platinum. The same cannot be said of “Popstar,” one of two new songs from DJ Khaled and Drake. In the track, Drake namedrops both Justin and his ex-girlfriend Selena Gomez. Justin subbed in for Drake in the “Popstar” music video, and caused quite a stir when he lip-synced Selena’s name on the track. “It’s 2020 and Justin still got Selena’s name in his mouth, LITERALLY,” one fan tweeted. Despite the reaction, a source told HollywoodLife EXCLUSIVELY that Justin and wife Hailey “are paying no attention” to what anyone is saying about him “singing” Selena’s name.