I'd Do Anything For Love (But I Won't Do That) is based on Beauty and the Beast and The Phantom of the Opera. Filming took place in Los Angeles County, California, and the opening chase was filmed at Chávez Ravine, with the interior mansion scenes filmed at Greystone Mansion in Beverly Hills.
The video opens with a caption: "I have travelled across the universe through the years to find her. Sometimes going all the way is just a start..." A police car and helicopter chase a motorcycle into to a gothic mansion. The police search the decrepit mansion with flashlights. Suddenly a motorcycle crashes through the wall, causing a policeman's gun to go off, shooting a chandelier, which falls on the man.
The Beast runs through dark woods, spying on a young woman, played by Dana Patrick, in a fountain. She senses that she is being watched when the sunlight from his pendant reflects in her hand mirror. He drops the pendant as he flees, whereupon she picks it up and follows.
Both characters are seen running through the woods. This cuts to the Beast sitting in the old mansion holding a chalice, in which he sees the reflection of the girl's face. As she runs through the woods, she comes across the mansion.
A group of police officers and vehicles seal off the mansion with yellow caution tape. The police officer's hand from the earlier sequence is shown, along with a blood-stained shard from the chandelier.
Different scenes become interspersed, some with Meat Loaf in and out of make-up, some with the girl bathing, then lying on a bed with three muses who appear to prepare her for meeting the Beast.
The Beast angrily smashes mirrors after seeing his reflection. The girl sits on a chair, which begins to rise above the ground, controlled by the Beast using a kinetoscope. She begins to sing her lines. During the duet sequence, the Beast and the girl are not seen in the same space of time; then, the group of policemen enter the mansion, looking for the Beast. The kinetoscope shatters, the chair falls, and the Beast and the girl join each other as they run from the room.
As they stop in a corridor, with the line "And you'll see that it's time to move on", the girl sees the Beast's face for the first time. Then, as she embraces him, his face is transformed into human form. The couple fade from the mansion as he declares "But I won't do that", and are seen riding into the sunset on a motorcycle.
Bob Keane did Meat Loaf's make-up, which took up to two hours to apply. It went over budget, and was filmed in 90 °F heat, across four days. The actress in the video, Dana Patrick, mimes to original female singer vocals, Lorraine Crosby.