While the world mourns the loss of Prince, we’re constantly learning new things about the late, great musician. A few days after Prince’s death, director Luc Besson shared that he almost cast the musician to play the hyperactive, hyper-sexualized intergalactic DJ Ruby Rhod in The Fifth Element. The director even shared sketches of what Prince’s planned costume would be if he had played Ruby.
So what stopped this collaboration? “He was supposed to play Ruby in the 5th Element…but couldn’t find dates during his tour,” said Besson. So instead we got Chris Tucker, who certainly gives his all, but is also probably the most irritating part of the entire movie. I’m curious if that manic, high-pitched tone is the way Besson wanted the role played, or if he changed his view of the character once he cast Tucker. It’s hard to imagine the smooth, even, confident sexuality of Prince bouncing off the walls like the Ruby we see in the final film.
Here’s the artwork for the planned Prince costume had he chosen to taken the role:
— Luc Besson (@lucbesson) April 23, 2016
For those who haven’t seen The Fifth Element (or need to be reminded), here’s Tucker’s take on the character: