Jimmy Iovine, Dr. Dre Feted at 'The Defiant Ones' Premiere
"I want to welcome everyone to Jimmy Iovine and Dr. Dre’s bar-mitzvah party," HBO’s chairman and CEO Richard Plepler joked as a star-studded crowd took their seats Thursday night for the premiere of the Defiant Ones, the four-part documentary that traces the bond between Iovine and Dr. Dre from their humble roots on opposite coasts to their $3 billion sale of their Beats headphone company and streaming service to Apple in 2014.
Introducing the series, Plepler recounted visiting Iovine at his Malibu home years ago and ogling the glitzy scene that included "all kinds of beautiful people" from rock stars to actors to athletes.
"I said, 'Jimmy, what do you do?'" Plepler recalled. "He said, 'I do hip-hop.' I said to him: 'Well, could I get involved in that at all?' He looked at me and he said: 'Hip-hop is not for you. TV, better for you.'"
Plepler said it wasn't the last time he'd taken advice from the former head of Interscope Records, who now oversees Apple Music, which has racked up 27 million paying subscribers over the past two years.
The film, directed by Allen Hughes, includes bold choices, opening with the tense moment that Iovine found out that Dr. Dre and Tyrese Gibson had posted a video on Facebook of themselves celebrating the Apple deal under the influence, before it was announced.
Dre, who announced in the Facebook video that he was “the first billionaire in hip-hop,” admits in the documentary to being embarrassed by the incident now.
Hughes, who also directed Menace II Society, thanked Iovine and Dre for their honesty.
“They were willing to be vulnerable,” he said.