David Bowie announced Tuesday that he had written and recorded an original song for the upcoming six-part European series The Last Panthers, the singer’s first track penned specifically for a television/film project in over 20 years. The song will feature in the opening credits of the diamond heist crime series, which will debut this November. Bowie was inspired to write the track after meeting with director Johan Renck, a music video veteran, on the set of The Last Panthers.
“I was looking for one of the icons of my youth to write the music for the title sequence, but was presented with a God,” Renck said in a statement. “His first response was precise, engaged and curious. The piece of music he laid before us embodied every aspect of our characters and the series itself – dark, brooding, beautiful and sentimental (in the best possible incarnation of this word). All along, the man inspired and intrigued me and as the process passed, I was overwhelmed with his generosity. I still can’t fathom what actually happened…”
Bowie’s last contribution to an original film/television project was in 1993 when he recorded The Buddha of Suburbia soundtrack and released his “Real Cool World” single for the film Cool World. Bowie’s 1997 single “I’m Afraid of Americans” originally appeared on the Showgirls soundtrack in 1995 before it was remade for Earthling. A song Bowie co-written and performed for 1998’s The Rugrats Movie was edited out of the film and later re-recorded and released as “Safe” in 2002.
In August, Bowie revealed that he had written a track for the upcoming SpongeBob SquarePants musical with Jonathan Coulton, but it’s unclear whether Bowie himself would record a version of the song. The Next Day rocker is also working on the musical Lazarus, based on the Bowie-starring film The Man Who Fell to Earth.
Renck himself is no stranger to the music world, having directed videos like Madonna’s “Hung Up,” Beyoncé’s “Me, Myself & I,” New Order’s “Crystal” and Bat for Lashes’ Karate Kid-inspired “Daniel.”