"I'm hands-on with everything, so this show is 100 percent authentic," Nas says in an interview with Rolling Stone. "Even if I don't look cool in it, I just want it to be real and raw. I didn't see this as a full autobiography at first. But I have so much that's happened in my life already. There was no room for fantasy. I wanted it to be entertaining, but everything from my life seemed to be so strong. It's all reality. There's nothing from my life I didn't want in there."
Nas, who is not set to act in the series, is slated to contribute music and co-write episodes of the program, something that he says has been cathartic.
"It's really therapeutic," Nas says. "I look back and I think about my mom [Anne Jones, who passed away in 2002] and I know she's looking down. Sometimes, I have a conversation with her, like, 'Did you ever think that our story would be put to film for people to see? Did you know it was that special back then?' I felt it was that special. This is life. I have to accept that and that's what writing this is like."
Looking back at his career, Nas also says he is proud of what he accomplished 20 years ago with the release of his debut album, Illmatic.
"It's like I gave myself a fortieth birthday present 20 years ago," Nas says. "It gives me a reference piece to look at myself and for me to analyze my life and what i've come from, my accomplishments, my dreams."
Beyond his Illmatic anniversary project, Nas also says a new album is coming "sometime in 2014" and that after illmaticXX "comes fresh new music."