The Weeknd draws inspiration from Pink Floyd and Prince for ‘The Idol’ soundtrack

The Weeknd has outlined some of the influences behind his buzzy — and ever controversial — upcoming HBO series The Idol. 

The Weeknd has revealed some of the inspirations behind the soundtrack for his upcoming television series, The Idol. The singer spoke of the HBO show — which he co-created and stars in — during a recent interview with Interview magazine, saying he was influenced by Pink Floyd and Prince when curating the The Idol’s soundtrack. 

I’ve been inspired by The Wall and Purple Rain,” the singer said in reference to Floyd and Prince’s albums, respectively. The Weeknd went on to name check David Bowie as another inspiration, before revealing that the hotly-anticipated show might be accompanied by a full-length project. “There’s a whole album,” The Weeknd teased. “I’m not shying away from making music. It’s just adding another element to my already crowded schedule.” 

the idol The Weeknd and Lily-Rose Depp
Credit: HBO

Elsewhere, The Weeknd referenced the use of soundtracks in some of the films that inspired The Idol, praising the Shaft franchise in that “music is literally telling the story of the film.” The singer also referenced Martin Scorsese, saying the director was likewise able to incorporate his favourite tunes within his work. “You watch a Scorsese movie, he’s just playing the music he likes,” The Weeknd said. “You hear him play the same Rolling Stones song seven times.” 

The interview comes days after the release of the latest trailer for The Idol, which is set to premiere on HBO on June 4. The series — which follows a rising pop star (played by Lily Rose-Depp) as she navigates the seedy underbelly of Hollywood’s music industry — has been subject to criticism in recent months, following accusations that co-creator Sam Levinson fostered an inappropriate culture on set. 


In any case, The Idol remains one of the year’s buzziest TV shows, with a slew of musicians like Troye Sivan, Moses Sumney and BLACKPINK bandmate Jennie Kim all forming part of the cast. Prior to the The Idol, The Weeknd was involved in the screen projects like Avatar: The Way of Water and 50 Shades of Grey, to which he contributed the songs Nothing Is Lost (You Give Me Strength) and Earned It, respectively.