It’s been over a week since Prince passed away, and the stories about his work, creativity, generosity, and impact are still being shared. And another fascinating nugget comes from director Baz Luhrmann, who was on hand last week at the Tribeca Film Festival to participate in a career-spanning conversation. The talk kicked off with a story about the musician, who he first worked with on “Romeo + Juliet,” when Luhrmann sought permission to use “When Doves Cry,” and it led to a collaboration on “The Great Gatsby” that unfortunately never saw the light of day.
“I was working with Prince on a song for ‘Gatsby.’ It was a re-imagined version of a song with did with Martika called ‘Love…Thy Will Be Done.’ It was going to be a major piece in it. We did work on it; when he was in Australia, we did some work there. In fact, we worked on it a lot,” Luhrmann shared. But thanks to legal wrangling, it didn’t make the movie. “It’s a co-owned piece, and he couldn’t quite get it released.” Perhaps eventually it will see the light of day.
At the moment for Luhrmann, his focus is on his upcoming Netflix series, “The Get Down,” which will take audiences back to the ’70s music scene in New York City. And one surprising contributor is Nas, who the director credits for being heavily involved and writing the rhymes for the central narrator.
“One of the things which I don’t think anyone knows, because it’s not in the trailers — and we’ve been doing this for about a year now — is that one of the characters goes on and we discover that he’s actually a successful rap star in the ’90s, and he narrates it through rhyme, through rap, on stage, in a sort of Madison Square Garden… It’s somewhere between pure rap narration and a sort of Greek chorus comment, and we use it a lot throughout,” he said. “Nas has been this other huge creative force in the production and it’s been playing really, really successfully.”
We can’t wait to see how that series turns out. Find out more about what’s coming in the lively conversation below.