Nas teamed up with Mass Appeal to give fans the chance to celebrate Illmatic’s 20th anniversary with a contest granting one lucky fan to direct a video for “Represent”.
Thirty-nine-year-old Brian Katz was chosen to direct the video, which was shot at the YouTube space in Los Angeles, California. His pitch? Using footage from the 1924 silent film The Thief of Bagdad, with parallel lines to connect the film’s protagonist to that of Nas’.

“As someone who has had Illmatic in heavy rotation for the past 20 years, the opportunity to represent as a true fan in sharing my vision with Nas and have Jason Goldwatch help bring that vision to reality, is proof positive that indeed, the world is yours,” says Katz.

Illmatic has now come full circle to the hands of fans.

When released in 1994, the album embodied the life stories and talent of a future legend. This year’s Illmatic XX featured remixes from various DJs and Nas enthusiasts. Having now teamed up with an ordinary fan to direct a music video for a song chosen from the album Nas has created the ultimate thank-you to his fans.

Words By. Matthew Anness