'Babylon' to Stream Exclusively on Paramount+

Paramount Pictures' Golden Globe-winning film Babylon has landed a streaming home. On Friday, Paramount+ announced that it will premiere the dark-comedy epic on Tuesday, Feb. 21, in the U.S. and Canada. Other global Paramount+ markets will get the movie later this year. Those interested in trying out a free trial of Paramount+ can do so by clicking here.

Set in early 1920's Hollywood, Babylon was written and directed by Damien Chazelle (La La Land, First Man). It follows an eclectic cast of characters all involved in the movie business during a time when the film industry was shifting from silent to sound. Babylon has an impressive cast of actors, such as Brad Pitt, Margot Robbie, Jean Smart, Tobey Maguire, Diego Calva, Jovan Adepo, and Li Jun Li. The film also features appearances by Jeff Garlin, Eric Roberts, Ethan Suplee, Samara Weaving, Olivia Wilde, Spike Jonze, and Red Hot Chili Peppers bassist Flea.

Recently, PopCulture.com had a chance to speak with Babylon composer Justin Hurwitz, who has worked with Chazelle on all of his directorial features. "He told me about it. I first learned about the project as he was writing it," Hurwitz recalled of Chazelle coming to him about the film. "At the end of 2018, he told me what he was working on and that was the first I heard of it." 

He continued, "Then, about a little less than a year later, in the fall of '19, he had a draft. When I got the draft and read it, I was just so entertained. It was such a ridiculously entertaining script, full of set pieces and gags and so much stuff and great monologues and just such soliloquies or whatever, such a great read.

Hurwitz added, "Then we dove in immediately. So, [I] started marking up the scripts, talking about where there would be music, where there wouldn't, the architecture of the whole score really. There was a lot that we didn't know and couldn't figure out until post-production, about an hour of the two hours of music we kind of saved until I could watch the movie and watch the scenes. But for a lot of it, we could build things and sort of come up with the architecture even from that script stage."

Notably, Hurwitz won a Golden Globe for his Babylon score and is now nominated for an Oscar in the same category, going up against the likes of the legendary John Williams. "I know, that's pretty surreal," the composer told us of his feelings about the big honor. "I'm excited just to spend some time with John. There are some nominee events and so I get to, I think he'll probably be at, there's a thing this coming week and I think in a few weeks after that. I had never met him until the Golden Globes. I'd, of course, wanted to meet him my whole life... and certainly, since I started to think about being a composer."

He went on to say, "I didn't know he was going to be at the Golden Globes, I thought maybe he wouldn't come. Then when [director Steven] Spielberg was giving his speech at the very end of the night, it was the last speech of the show and he said he thanked Johnny Williams and he pointed to the corner. I was like, "He's here? He's here?" As soon as that speech ended, I sprinted across the room and I met him because I'd been wanting to meet him for a while.