The network made the announcement on Tuesday. “David Byrne’s American Utopia is a uniquely transformative experience and a perfect example of how entertainment can bring us together during these challenging times,” Nina Rosenstein, HBO’s executive VP of programming, told Variety. “Spike’s brilliant direction adds a level of intimacy to this powerful performance, and we’re so thrilled to share this groundbreaking show with our audience.”
In 2019, Bryne and 11 other musicians performed a version of his 2018 album American Utopia, as well as a handful of songs from his band the Talking Heads. The production showed at the Hudson Theatre from Oct. 20, 2019 to Feb. 16, 2020.
“Spike and I have crossed paths many times over the years, obviously I’m a huge fan and now finally here was an opportunity for us to work together,” Byrne said, per the outlet. “I am absolutely thrilled with the result. The Broadway show was a wonderful challenge as well as an opportunity—it was a joy to perform and, well, best to let the quotes speak for themselves. Thrilled that this show and the subjects it addresses will now reach a wider audience.”
“It is my honor and privilege that my art brother, Mr. David Byrne, asked me to join him in concert, to invite me into his magnificent world of American Utopia,” Spike Lee said. “And dat’s da ‘once in a lifetime’ truth, Ruth. Ya-dig? Sho-nuff. Peace and love. Be safe.”
Lee's new film Da 5 Bloods—which centers on a group of Black men who fought during the Vietnam War—just released on Netflix on June 12 and stars Delroy Lindo, Norm Lewis, Clarke Peters, Isiah Whitlock Jr., Jonathan Majors, and Chadwick Boseman.