The news of Jay-Z’s involvement in the film adaptation of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby just got more epic.
The Hov MC put to rest the idea that he’d be scoring the film, and, instead, is executive producing the entire soundtrack, performing on select songs of what’s sure to be a cinematic Best of Both Worlds, an American Gangster project that could have come about if he was paid to produce that movie’s soundtrack rather than his own inspired-by album of the same title.
“As soon as I spoke with Baz and Leonardo, I knew this was the right project,” Jay said in a statement. “The Great Gatsby is that classic American story of one’s introduction to extravagance, decadence and illusion.”
Baz Luhrmann, the film’s writer/director/producer, was introduced to Jay-Z by Leonardo DiCaprio, who is playing Jay (Jay Gatsby, that is).
The film, like the popular novel, centers on Nick Carraway (played by Tobey “Spider-Man” Mcguire), a salesman/writer who moves to New York City during the Roaring '20s (a period of champagne bottle-popping prosperity and bootlegging). His next door neighbor is James Gatsby, a mysterious millionaire with a questionable past.
“It’s ripe for experimentation and ready to be interpreted with a modern twist,” said Jay (Shawn Carter, that is).
“Not only is Jay-Z a great artist, full stop, but I had heard that he was a great collaborator,” Luhrmann said. “Leonardo and I were lucky enough to be present in a recording session over two years ago as Jay-Z was recording 'No Church in the Wild,' and the collaboration grew from there."
Jay was equally excited to work with Luhrmann. “The imagination Baz brought to Moulin Rouge made it a masterpiece, and Romeo + Juliet's score wasn’t just in the background; the music became a character. This film’s vision and direction has all the makings of an epic experience.”
The Great Gatsby opens in 2D and 3D May 10. The soundtrack is being distributed by Interscope.
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(Photo: Paul Zimmerman/Getty Images)