Video: When Doves Cry

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1983: Let’s Pretend We’re Married Music Videos
Music Videos
(Related Artists)
1984: Let’s Go Crazy
When Doves Cry

When Doves Cry music video selected snapshots

Music Video details

First aired: Week of 14 May 1984
Producer(s): Sharon Oreck and Simon Fields
Director: Prince / Larry Williams
Related home video/DVD: Purple Rain (DVD release - 20th Anniversary Collector Edition)
First (Commercially) Released: 24 August 2004


Date Institution, Country Award
3rd annual American Video Awards, USA 3 Apr. 1985 Best Soul Video

When Doves Cry is a Prince and the Revolution video released for broadcast and to promote the single.

It is Prince’s first video that was not just a simple performance of the song but a fully produced and staged video with its own (although vague) storyline and different backdrops. The video was shot at the A & M Records soundstage in Los Angeles. Photographer Larry Williams, who also worked on other projects for Prince that year including the covers for The Glamorous Life, Ice Cream Castle and Apollonia 6 was hired as director for the video. Before the first shots, Prince let Simon Fields (producer) know that Williams’ presence was not needed: "Prince said to me "He (Larry) doesn’t have to be here." So I gave Larry some magazines and he sat outside and did some reading." Prince handled the directing and the choreography.

Of note, this is the first video to feature the The Revolution with Wendy Melvoin. When Doves Cry also incorporates scenes from the Purple Rain movie two months before its theatrical release in the USA.

Two versions of the video were created for broadcast : the full 5:58 version and an edited 3:45 minute version. Prince reproduced parts of the video on the Purple Rain Tour by using the same costume, props and choreography.

Shooting Information
Shooting Sessions
Date Location Additional info
Spring 1984 A&M Records Soundstage, Hollywood, CA, USA

Released Versions
Title Length Released Version Additional info
When Doves Cry 5:58 Purple Rain (2004 DVD release)

Prince streaming video platforms (2017)
Released for sale as separate track on iTunes (2017)

full length
When Doves Cry 3:45 The Story So Far... (1986)

Prince streaming video platforms (2017)

When Doves Cry 2:38 Nothing Compares 2 Him film edit from Purple rain movie.

Additional Information

See Also Quotation & triva

  • Nominations:
- Favorite Pop/Rock Video: 12th American Music Awards (28 January 1985).
- Favorite Soul/R&B Video: 12th American Music Awards (28 January 1985).
- Best Choreography in a Video (choreographer: Prince): 1985 MTV Music Video Awards (13 September 1985).

Let’s Pretend We’re Married
Music Videos (Prince) Music Videos (Related Artists) 1984
Let’s Go Crazy