Kanye West premiered his Cruel Summer short film as part of a ritzy party during the Cannes Film Festival in France on Wednesday night (May 23).
Joined by the likes of Jay-Z, Kid Cudi and Kim Kardashian, Yeezy’s 30-minute short was projected onto seven screens inside the tented pyramid of the Palm Beach Club. According to MTV News, the seven screens alternately flickered on and off, forcing the audience to rotate their heads and look all around, instead of staring straight ahead like traditional movie or television viewing.
“It related to a post-Steve Jobs, post-Windows era, where we’re always on our BlackBerry in a ball game or at the movies,” West said of the viewing setup during a speech, which was recorded by MTV. “I was very particular about having the screens separate, where your mind puts the screens back together, the way you put memories together. I’m not the best director in the world, but I had an idea that I thought would be amazing to inspire people, like a dream of one day this being the way people watch movies.
“You know, [Quentin] Tarantino doing a movie like this or a horror movie like this, animation, 3-D … in this form that surrounds you,” he added. “People want to go back and see it more and more because they missed something to their left or to their right, and it feels more like the experience of life.”
Cruel Summer, which is said to be inspired by Kanye’s G.O.O.D. Music compilation album of the same name, pits Kid Cudi as a car thief who falls in love with a blind Arabian princess.
“I’m nervous, just like with anything I do, with people watching, but I’m really proud of it,” Cudi told MTV. “I’m happy that Kanye had me as part of it. It’s so humbling. He’s a genius, he’s the best, the illest … you can quote me on that!”
Like ’Ye’s previous short, Runaway, Cruel Summer plays like an extended music video. It was shot in Qatar. The film will be available for public viewing at the Cannes Film Festival through Friday (May 25). Kanye and Jay-Z are also currently on the European leg of their Watch The Throne tour.—Jakinder Singh