Days before the release of Annie, the 2014 remake of the film originally released in 1982, Jay Z and Will Smith offered their thoughts on the project.

According to Jay Z, who helped in producing the film, Annie “feels like magic” and provides a “story of hope.” In 1998, Jay Z sampled “It’s The Hard Knock Life” from the Broadway version of Annie for his Vol. 2… Hard Knock Life record, “Hard Knock Life (Ghetto Anthem).”

“It feels like New York City. It feels like magic, anything can happen. There’s a consistent theme there. That story of hope,” Jay Z said while appearing on the red carpet at the Annie premiere earlier this month.

Will Smith, who also serves as one of the producers of the film, applauded both Jay Z and Australian musician Sia for their musical contributions to Annie.

“Anytime you revisit a timeless story and that’s where you always wanna be able to add something different,” Smith said. “Jay and Sia did a really brilliant job of creating that new sound, that new vibe and a new energy.”

Annie will be released in theaters on Friday, December 19. The Will Gluck-directed film stars Jamie Foxx, Quvenzhane Wallis, and Cameron Diaz.

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