LITTRELL: The funny thing was, when we recorded the video for [“Quit Playing Games,”] Nick hadn’t cut the second verse yet. So he was singing to my voice.
DOROUGH: That video, I remember it being cold and rainy [during filming] and the director was like, “Are any of you guys cool with taking your shirt off?” And at the time I was 21 years old, and I definitely had a different body then than I do now, so I was like “Sure, why not?” And then we saw it and we were like, “Oh my gosh, we’re gonna come off as beefcakes.”
MCLEAN: “Quit Playing Games” for some reason, that one hit. At first, MTV was like, “we’re not going to play a video with these guys in the rain taking their shirts off, there’s just no way.” And then it just started to really catch on. That is when TRL, and the whole MTV world, started to catch on.
DOROUGH: Once MTV came around and embraced us, that’s when I definitely had a feeling of there might be a chance to really be accepted here, possibly at the level that it was worldwide.
LITTRELL: I really think ["As Long As You Love Me"] is like “Quit Playing Games” on steroids, as that big group song. "Quit Playing Games" had such a melodic melody, easy listening to it -- that’s really where "As Long As You Love Me" came from, when you listen to sounds and the guitars and keyboards and the chord structure. It’s very, very similar. Max is a genius with the same four chords.
MCLEAN: I literally learned the lyrics of “As Long As You Love Me” the day we shot the video. I actually was supposed to sing the bridge that Brian sings -- the verses were supposed to be Brian and Nick, and then me on the bridge, because that was the formula -- but I had strep throat, and Max was pressured for time. So he was like, “Look, I can’t wait another day. Unless AJ can come in tomorrow, we’ve got to get somebody on the bridge.” So the song got cut, mastered, and put on the album, and it became the single.
LITTRELL: The first day of that video shoot was the 15th of June, 1997. I was heading to the shoot and I had a stack of the headshots of the young ladies that were going to be in the video. The last picture that I came to was Leighanne Wallace, and I was like “Wow, I have to remember that name,” because she was just stunning. We get to the video shoot and she was nowhere to be found. About five after 9, she shows up running in about two hours late. She’s prettier than the picture, like The Weeknd song, [Sings] “Cause you look even better than the photo.” Every time I hear that line I’m like “Man, you’re reading my mind. That’s what I thought about my wife, I should’ve written that song!” [Laughs.]