Anyone who’s been keeping tabs on the progress that Abel “The Weeknd” Tesfaye has been making with his and Sam Levinson’s HBO drama The Idol has had to keep their head on a swivel as the direction of the show and the members of the cast have been as back and forth as The Weeknd and Bella Hadid’s messy past relationship status. Last month, a teaser featuring cocaine, sex, and darkly lit rooms was released, which was to be expected since Sam, the controversial director of Euphoria, and The Weeknd, who loves coke, are at the helm. No premiere date for the show–which is about “a self-help guru and leader of a modern-day cult, who develops a complicated relationship with an up-and-coming pop idol–has been given, but we may be getting closer since this weekend The Weeknd played a new teaser for The Idol at his Saturday night concert in Las Vegas, according to Variety.
We already know that an implied part of the conflict that was keeping the cast and crew rotating and the show from getting in the can was that The Weeknd felt that the show might’ve been leaning too hard into a “female perspective” which I’m sure just means that Lily Rose-Depp, who plays “the pop idol” was getting more camera time and storyline than him and he wasn’t ok with not being the show’s STAH.
The show has had significant changes behind the scenes in recent months, as changes in creative direction led to director Amy Seimetz leaving the show.
“‘The Idol’s’ creative team continues to build, refine, and evolve their vision for the show and they have aligned on a new creative direction,” HBO said in a statement to Variety in April. “The production will be adjusting its cast and crew accordingly to best serve this new approach to the series. We look forward to sharing more information soon.”
But, this new teaser could be a sign that the kinks have finally been ironed out since we get a glimpse of much of the cast and some more footage.
The trailer shows quick footage of the players, including Abel “The Weeknd” Tesfaye, Lily-Rose Depp, Suzanna Son, Troye Sivan, Moses Sumney, Jane Adams, Dan Levy, Jennie Ruby Jane, Eli Roth, Rachel Sennott, Hari Nef, Da’Vine Joy Randolph, Mike Dean, Ramsey and Hank Azaria.
The teaser debuted at the Weeknd’s concert Saturday night at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas. There’s still no premiere date set for the show, with the trailer teasing that it’s “coming soon.”
HBO should have expected that The Weeknd–who has several times changed his facial aesthetic along with his albums, threatened to pull out of Coachella if they didn’t pay up to his liking, and thinks his music is too great to be submitted for Grammy Awards–would be difficult to work with. But fuck if they care if The Weeknd gets his masterpiece, Sam Levinson gets more people apprehensively naked and Lily-Rose gets to pay homage to dad Johnny Depp’s cocaine usage in Blow, because House of the Dragon is here and that’s their new bread and butter for the next few years.