'The Defiant Ones,' Allen Hughes and the American Dream

"'The Defiant Ones' is about two men who found friendship in an industry that frowns on the word."
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For the HBO documentary series,

The Defiant Ones

, director Allen Hughes has made a bold film about the unlikely but ultimately unbreakable bond of trust and friendship between Dr. Dre and Jimmy Iovine, two street-smart men from different worlds who have shaped many of the most exciting and extreme moments in recent pop culture.

Hughes filmed Jimmy Iovine and Dr. Dre with over a three-year period in making

The Defiant Ones

. In addition to extensive interviews with Dre and Iovine, who speak frankly about their highs and lows, the show includes interviews with such music icons as Snoop Dogg, Bruce Springsteen, Gwen Stefani, Bono, David Geffen, Eminem, Nas, Stevie Nicks, Kendrick Lamar, Ice Cube, Jon Landau, Patti Smith, Lady Gaga, Doug Morris, Tom Petty, Trent Reznor, Diddy, Alonzo Williams and will.i.am. The series also features never-before-seen footage from a multitude of recording and writing sessions with Eazy-E, JJ Fad, Stevie Nicks, N.W.A., Tom Petty, The D.O.C., Bruce Springsteen and U2, among others.


The Defiant Ones

takes a deep dive into the most pivotal period in the history of the recording business," explains Hughes. "When the idea of music as a commodity was redefined in a way no artist could imagine. When technology reshaped how the consumer listened to music. When the device by which music was channeled became bigger than the music it held. And when inner cities fumed with frustration, leading to a new era of music.

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"The Defiant Ones is about the American Dream. How two men built an unconventional business in a conventional world. How they reinvented not only a business model, but themselves in the process. The Defiant Ones is about two men who found friendship in an industry that frowns on the word, with personal tragedy and professional strife giving way to redemption as they tackled changing times to find relevance, enduring a rollercoaster ride as they travelled on a journey few could survive."

Hughes tells Philip Cosores, "The music business is quick, and the attention span is so short. The film business, you have to be real patient and nurture things. That’s what was amazing about Jimmy and Dre on this project, because they do get it and knew it was going to take time to get this right. Normally, there would be more immediacy there because things turn over so quickly in the record business. But taking time to get it right — that's a film thing."

HBO's The Defiant Ones: An Interview with Allen Hughes

The Defiant Ones Director Allen Hughes on Interviewing Eminem, Bruce Springsteen and Dr. Dre