Australian filmmaker Baz Luhrmann, known for movies with wall-to-wall soundtracks like “Moulin Rouge!” and “The Great Gatsby,” has entered into an exclusive, multi-tiered agreement with RCA Records.
The deal includes the establishment of a new record label, Bazmark Records, with RCA handling creative, marketing and distribution worldwide. Also on the table is the option of jointly acquiring the rights to additional recording projects, as well as signing new artists under the joint Bazmark Records/RCA Records imprint.
Luhrmann’s Sony Pictures TV series “The Get Down,” slated for Netflix in 2016, will provide fresh content for the deal. The urban saga revolves around Bronx teens in the late ’70s as the rise of hip-hop, punk and disco coincides with a spike in crime and violence.
“Baz’s creativity and passion is what makes him one of the most dynamic creative visionaries of our time,” said RCA Records chairman-CEO Peter Edge in a statement.
While acknowledging in the announcement that he’s “best known for storytelling,” Luhrmann declared that “my true passion has always been music. You can imagine what it feels like for someone from a small town in Australia to be invited to join the legendary record label RCA, home of the King, and so many musical legends and personal heroes.”
The Grammy-nominated soundtrack for “Gatsby” (2013), Luhrmann’s last feature, featured a mashup of pop originals and reworked classics, including such artists as Jay-Z, an executive producer on the project, as well as Jack White, Lana Del Rey, Florence + the Machine, and the Bryan Ferry Orchestra. The album, along with the soundtracks of “Moulin Rouge!” and “William Shakespeare’s Romeo + Juliet” (1999), have sold more than 15 million units worldwide.
In 1998, Luhrmann produced and released his own album, “Something for Everybody,” which consisted of new versions of music from his various films and plays.