Prince is coming back to theaters, thanks to Universal Pictures.
According to Variety, Universal is preparing to make a musical film based around several of Prince’s classic songs. The studio was able to acquire the rights to said songs from the Prince estate.
It’s important to say that the film isn’t a biopic of His Royal Badness. Instead, the film will be an original story based around Prince’s songs. The film, the article states, could be in the vein of Mamma Mia, which also has an original story that is driven by already-existing songs. In Mamma Mia‘s case, it’s songs by ABBA. Troy Carter, Atom Factory exec and entertainment advisor for Prince’s estate, will act as an executive producer as well as Universal Music Publishing Group’s Chairman and CEO Jody Gerson.
Some hardcore Prince fans might be thankful that Universal is not making a biopic. Variety’s sources say Universal didn’t want to touch a biopic, feeling Prince did it the best with his 1984 classic film Purple Rain.
This film is going to be a contentious one. In life, Prince was notoriously cautious about who was allowed to use his music. Much of Prince’s career throughout the ’90s was highlighted by his protest against music companies owning artists’ intellectual property. So it might be a little suspect to many Prince fans that Prince’s closely guarded music is now being utilized for everything from films (including Spike Lee’s BlacKkKlansman) to commercials, something Prince hardly ever allowed when he was alive.
But, on the flip side, a film like this could be how Prince fans can relive the magic of Prince’s music. The best thing about Purple Rain, for instance, isn’t necessarily the story (although scenes from the film are certainly iconic); it’s the music. What better way to hear Prince’s music than through the blaring surround sound of a movie theater?
This movie news will be something in which Prince fans examine their feelings. Everyone’s going to come to a different conclusion. But regardless, the film is coming, so let’s hope the film’s story is one that could have gotten the stamp of approval from The Purple One.