Nas: Time Is Illmatic, the documentary film that chronicles the making of the rapper’s prolific 1994 album Illmatic, is set to make its TV debut on Showtime next month.
The film had an acclaimed premiere at the 2014 Tribeca Film Festival in April, which coincided with the 20th Anniversary Edition release of the groundbreaking LP, titled Illmatic XX.
Directed by One9, written by Erik Parker, and produced by One9, Parker and Anthony Saleh, Time Is Illmatic traces the rapper’s origins and influences, beginning with his jazz-musician father Olu Dara.
The film also explores the “social conditions and environmental influences” that affected the rapper by examining his relationships with his Queensbridge neighbors, younger brother Jabari “Jungle” Fret and mother Ann Jones.
“We didn’t set out to make a documentary about 20 years of an album,” Parker said earlier this year. “We started out to make a documentary about 10 years and reflect on how great that album was when it came out. However, it touched us in such a way and it represented our generation in such a way that it is an album that speaks to us and for us in the manner that no other album does of its time.”
“Not to exclude any other album, but we chose one that touched us and had so many different layers to it,” he continued. “If you look at different albums of that time, they’re great albums that came out, but they have different textures than ‘Illmatic.’ ‘Illmatic”s layers are very deep and they’re very honest and they strike a chord in the people that it represents. And we wanted to tap into that.”
Tune into Nas: Time Is Illmatic on Friday, December 12th at 9:00 pm ET/PT on Showtime.