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Home / News Archive / News February 2013

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Prince JacksonMJ's Son Prince To Make Acting Debut In '90210' TV Series. 26-02-'13

Washington, Feb 26 (ANI): Prince Michael Jackson, son of the late legendary entertainer Michael Jackson, has landed a guest role on the CW's 90210 season 5 finale.

E! Online reports that the 16-year-old will take on the role of Cooper, a trauma victim who ends up forming a special bond with Jessica Stroup's character, Erin Silver, Contactmusic reported.

Prince, who is hoping that that the job will lead him to a long career in the entertainment industry, revealed that he is looking forward to become well-rounded as a producer, director, screenwriter and actor.

The acting job comes just one week after it was revealed the teenager had landed a gig as a special correspondent for 'Entertainment Tonight'.

Source: ANI / Billie Jean


Michael Jackson Autographed Concorde Menu. 26-02-'13

An original British Airways Concorde menu which has been autographed by Michael Jackson in black ballpoint pen. The autograph comes with a letter from the original recipient on Concorde letter headed paper which states that the autograph was obtained on a flight between London and New York in the late 1990s.

The item is up for auction on 28 Feb. 2013.

MJ Autographed Concorde Menu

Source: PFC Auctions / Billie Jean


Michael FlanaganMurray’s Attorney Ordered To Turn Over Criminal File. 26-02-'13

Michael Flanagan, one of Conrad Murray's attorneys during his involuntary manslaughter trial, has formally been ordered to turn over his complete criminal file of Michael Jackson‘s one-time doctor and to cooperate with Murray's appellate lawyer Valerie Wass. Wass filed a motion to compel with the appellate court and alleged that Flanagan hasn’t returned multiple phone calls, letters, and e-mails made by her.

The new court order says, “Mr. Flanagan advised the court by telephone that no response to the motion would be filed. Good causing appearing therefore, it is hereby ordered that Valerie Wass’ motion be granted as follows: J. Michael Flanagan is ordered to provide appellate counsel Valerie Wass his entire trial file and to cooperate with appellate counsel.”

Flanagan had dropped Murray as a client, following a physical and verbal altercation involving himself, his son and Wass. Shortly after the altercation, Wass filed a police report alleging Flanagan’s son pushed her. A Los Angeles County Sheriff’s spokesperson said it was a “very minor altercation,” but that there would be an investigation in to the matter.

Murray is currently appealing his conviction as he serves out a four year sentence at the Los Angeles County Men’s Central Jail.

Source: MJFC / Radar Online / Billie Jean


LaToya JacksonFriedman: LaToya Finally Makes Money Off Of MJ. 26-02-'13

Roger Friedman posted the following on his Showbiz411 column: LaToya Jackson Finally Makes Money Off of Michael: Agenting His Kid to TV.

For years and years LaToya Jackson tried to make money off of her famous brother Michael. Nothing worked, even though La Toya tried publishing books, making records, and appearances. She wrote critically of Michael, too. But now she’s figured out a way to get money from Michael even though he left her nothing in his estate. La Toya is the agent-manager for Michael’s 16 year old son Prince. She’s just cut a deal for him to be in the CW revival series of “Beverly Hills 90210.”

Maybe the trade papers don’t realize that Ja-Tail is LaToya’s company. She also cut the deal for him to be on “Entertainment Tonight.” So LaToya will now be taking commissions on Prince’s work. Soon will come deals for Paris. Michael didn’t want his kids to work as children. He famous resented losing his own childhood, and feared the same for his kids. But he’s dead, and his wishes apparently matter not at all to the Jacksons.

I am told there’s a proposal making the rounds once again for some kind of reality show featuring Jacksons which Ja-Tail is likely behind. It never ends.

Source: Showbiz 411 / Billie Jean


Michael Jackson Hits Broadway! – First Look At Motown: The Musical. 26-02-'13

When Motown: The Musical begins performances on Broadway March 11, Michael Jackson won't be there only in spirit.

The King of Pop will be right on stage – portrayed by an actor, as will several of the other big-name powerhouses from the fabled Detroit hit factory: Diana Ross and the Supremes, Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye, the Temptations, Smokey Robinson and their '60s record label's founder, Berry Gordy. (They can all be seen in a first-look video clip of the show, exclusive to PEOPLE.com.)

Raymond Luke Jr. plays the young Jackson, who, as part of the Jackson Five with his four older brothers, was signed by Gordy in 1968, when Michael was only 10 – the same age Luke, who is now 12, was when he started "studying" the genuine Jackson.

"I didn't know Michael Jackson [when I was 8]," admitted the L.A. native, whose grandmother first taught him to sing when he was 3, "then I started looking him up."

A graduate of the Beverly Hills Acting School FABA (For Actors by Actors), and already a veteran of Toys "R" Us and Volkswagen commercials, Luke says, "I wanted to be a singer, but I never knew this musical was going to happen and that I'd get to sing about six to eight Michael Jackson songs" – including "I Got the Feelin'," "I Want You Back," "ABC," "The Love You Save" and "I'll Be There."

Neither did Luke know that out of hundreds for hopefuls who were seen by Motown: The Musical director Charles Randolph-Wright – both live and on audition videos – he'd be the one to land the plum role. (He'll alternate performances with another child actor, Jibreel Mawry, whom Luke calls "amazing.")

"Michael Jackson had intensity and a confidence, combined with a naiveté. He was almost hypnotic in his allure," Randolph-Wright tells PEOPLE. "You can't replicate one of a kind, but Raymond has that spirit, that feeling Michael Jackson gave you. He makes you smile."

Living in Brooklyn with his father, Raymond Sr., while his four siblings remain out west, Luke considers making his Broadway debut "fun" – especially, he tells PEOPLE, when he wears his favorite costume, Jackson's purple hat and bellbottoms, just like Michael did on The Ed Sullivan Show to sing "Who's Loving You?"

For Randolph-Wright, Luke is "authentic." And should any of Michael's children come see the show? "It would be amazing," Luke exclaims. "I want to make his family proud."

Motown: The Musical, featuring the Motown music catalogue and a book by Berry Gordy, begins previews March 11 at Broadway's Lunt-Fontanne Theatre, with an official opening April 14.

 

Source: People / Billie Jean


Yvette PalazueloJudge Leans Toward Letting Jackson Suit Continue. 26-02-'13

A jury should decide whether the promoter of Michael Jackson's final concerts negligently hired and supervised the physician convicted of causing the singer's death, a judge tentatively ruled Monday.

If the ruling stands, it will allow the case by Jackson's mother, Katherine, to go forward and present the theory that concert giant AEG Live controlled the physician who gave the superstar a lethal dose of the anesthetic propofol.

Superior Court Judge Yvette Palazuelos' tentative ruling however eliminates some of Katherine Jackson's claims and an attorney for AEG predicted the company would win at trial.

It is unclear when the ruling will be finalized, or whether the judge will change it. She heard two hours of arguments about the case on Monday but didn't indicate whether her mind had been changed.

AEG attorney Marvin Putnam said he was pleased with the ruling and reiterated his belief that the case should have never been filed.

The case centers on whether AEG did an appropriate investigation of Conrad Murray, a former cardiologist who is serving his sentence after being convicted of the involuntary manslaughter of the pop singer. The case also involves whether AEG controlled him while Jackson prepared for a series of comeback concerts.

Katherine Jackson's attorney, Kevin Boyle, declined comment after the hearing, saying he wanted to see the final order.

He told Palazuelos that AEG created a division of loyalties for Murray between his care of Jackson and maintaining an arrangement that would have paid him $150,000 a month to care for the singer.

Jackson died before Murray's contract was signed, and AEG argues he was not an employee of the company.

"AEG just made this more risky for Michael," Boyle argued Monday.

He said the case was unique and it should proceed intact with claims that AEG is liable for Murray's actions. "This has never happened before, or at least no one's been caught," Boyle said.

Putnam argued that by the time it was negotiating Murray's contract to treat Jackson while performing a series of London concerts, the doctor had already been treating the singer for some time, had relocated from Las Vegas to Los Angeles and had ordered large amounts of propofol to help Jackson sleep.

"Sadly, it appears that Michael Jackson's death would have occurred anyway," Putnam said after the hearing.

Katherine Jackson sued in September 2010 and a trial has been scheduled for early April.

Source: Yahoo / Billie Jean


Jermaine JacksonJermaine Misses Brother Michael. 25-02-'13

Michael Jackson's elder brother Jermaine has said that even when they were touring the world as The Jackson 5 with his siblings, they still found time to be kids.

He said that when he thinks of Michael then, what he remembers most is all the clowning around and practical jokes.

Touring Australia in 1973 was such an adventure, he said.

"We went all over the place and when we weren't performing, we were doing things like going into the outback, where we spent time with Aboriginal people and learnt how to throw a boomerang," News.com.au quoted him as saying.

He said that he is excited to be coming back to Australia, but he's looking forward to returning with his brothers.

In his book, 'You Are Not Alone: Michael, Through a Brother's Eyes', he sets the record straight.

He said that there has been so many books written about the pop legend which weren't accurate or the truth, so he wanted to tell his side of the story, which is the real story because he lived through it.

Touring again as The Jacksons has been healing for them. The first time Tito, Marlon, Jackie and Jermaine performed together without Michael was hard because they felt his presence so much and missed him, he said.

"We're still mourning his passing, but we felt it would be good to go out and play the music and make people happy, and at the same time, it's making us happy as well. He'd want us to do this," he added.

Source: ANI / Billie Jean


Jermaine JacksonLA Judge Grants Jermaine Jackson Name Change. 24-02-'13

Jermaine Jackson has a new, brighter surname — Jacksun.

A Los Angeles judge approved the change to singer's name Friday.

The 58-year-old, who shared lead singing duties with his younger brother Michael in the Jackson 5, did not appear in court.

He sought the name change for "artistic reasons" and says it has nothing to do with a recent rift in his family over the care of Michael Jackson's children and family matriarch Katherine Jackson.

His attorney Bret D. Lewis says Jacksun is in Europe performing with his brothers and told him that he was sure it was "a sunny day in California."

Lewis says he doesn't know whether Jacksun will elaborate on the creative reasons for the change.

Source: Yahoo / Billie Jean


This Michael Jackson Tribute Features The Late Singer Moonwalking In Lego. 24-02-'13

This Michael Jackson tribute is pretty unusual in that it features the late pop star moonwalking in LEGO. Bet you didn't see that one coming. Created by Annette Jung from Berlin animation studio Talking Animals, Lego Dance is a 30 second animation of the late king of pop doing the moonwalk and other high energy dance moves.

MJ's silhouette is distinctive in his skinny black trousers, with an open tuxedo, white shirt, spats and a bowed wide brimmed hat. Watch as the much mourned star dances and grooves his way through this quirky and highly entertaining animated short. The Berlin based animation studio behind this video are a group of young graduates from the 'Konrad Wolf' in Babelsberg. They founded the animation studio in 2009.

 

Source: Trend Hunter / Billie Jean


Jacksons Say Michael Was Persuted Like Jesus. 23-02-'13

The Jacksons believe their brother Michael Jackson was persecuted like Jesus.

The group - brothers Tito, Jackie, Marlon and Jermaine - think the late King of Pop's life mirrored the Biblical figure's own existence in many ways because of the effect he had on people and the way his life was destroyed.

Asked if Michael was a pop messiah, Jackie said: ''I wouldn't say that. No one's bigger than God or Jesus. But everywhere Michael went, every country, when he left the airport people would line up on the freeway just to get a glimpse of him.''

Speaking to The Guardian newspaper, Jermaine added: ''God blessed him because he knew what Michael was going to do with his talent. He was a voice for children who were starving, and he brought the world sing like 'We Are The World', 'Heal The World' and 'Man In The Mirror'. Everything he did was for the betterment of mankind.

''You mentioned Jesus. Look what he did when he walked the earth. He did all those miracles and they still found a way to nail him up on that cross.''

The Jacksons

The four brothers went on to allege Dr. Conrad Murray - who is currently serving jail time for involuntary manslaughter for his part in Michael's death from Propofol intoxication in June 2009 - was a stooge of his record company Sony and they believe the label deliberately orchestrated his downfall by planting allegations of child molestation in the media.

The 'Thriller' singer bought a 50 per cent stake in Sony/ATV in 1985 and his siblings have a ''conspiracy theory'' that the label wanted to diminish his popularity and power to wrestle control of the valuable catalogue of songs back from Michael.

Jermaine accusingly said: ''Bottom line? They killed him. The doctor was just a figure in a bigger hand.''

The police searched Michael's home on November 18, 2003 for evidence of child abuse, on the same day his 'Number Ones' compilation album was released, an action the Motown legends believe was a deliberate attempt to sabotage his career.

Jermaine added: ''It was the biggest album he ever could have had, probably bigger than 'Thriller'. And they put this c**p out about him, on the day of its release? That's no coincidence.''

Source: Contact Music / Billie Jean


Matt FiddesFormer Michael Jackson Bodyguard Fined. 22-02-'13

A former bodyguard of the late US singer Michael Jackson has been fined for issuing fake court summons. Matt Fiddes, from Barnstaple in north Devon, admitted during a separate hearing at Exeter crown court last month to one charge of delivering a copy of a paper falsely purporting to be a county court summons.

The offence arose at a time when the martial arts and fitness trainer was acting in divorce proceedings, the court was told on Friday.

He was handed a £750 fine, and ordered to pay £1,200 costs and a £15 victim surcharge.

Judge Francis Gilbert QC said: "You would have saved yourself a lot of the trouble if you had admitted what you did at the start."

The court heard that doubts over the authenticity of the papers were raised because they were issued to another man without the customary court stamp.

"It was rather a stupid thing to have done," the judge said, adding that Fiddes had had "a significant business".

The 33-year-old had worked as a minder for Jackson in the past and had been friends with members of the singer's family before a separate court dispute.

The defendant is also a former celebrity trainer to Australian singer Peter Andre and British model Danielle Lloyd.

Source: Guardian.co / Billie Jean


Michael BubléMichael Bublé Is Channeling Michael Jackson On His New Album. 22-02-'13

Michael Bublé has revealed that he is going for a more soulful sound on his new record To Be Loved. Michael took a different musical direction with his new songs and is happy that he finally sang songs in the way he has always dreamed of.

“I am channeling my favourite artist in the world, Michael Jackson…this record I felt like I finally didn’t care,” he explained. “I would allow myself to challenge myself to go to a place that was probably too scary for me to go before because I was afraid of what people would think about a white boy singing this stuff.”

Michael believes listeners will realise that he put his heart and soul into To Be Love. He is extremely proud of his work. “I love this record. I think it’s a very special record, it’s probably my best,” Michael gushed.

Source: ET Canada / Billie Jean


Michael Jackson OnePress Release Michael Jackson One. 22-02-'13

Las Vegas, February 21, 2013 – The Estate of Michael Jackson and Cirque du Soleil today unveiled that Michael Jackson ONE™ will open and take residency exclusively at Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino this summer. Directed by Jamie King, Michael Jackson ONE will start its preview performances on May 23, 2013 and have its official premiere on June 29, 2013. This entirely new show is the second creative project to be developed between Cirque du Soleil and The Estate of Michael Jackson after the top grossing Michael Jackson THE IMMORTAL World Tour, currently playing arenas in Europe as it travels the world.

The show
Michael Jackson ONE is a state-of-the-art visual and audio experience creating a theatrical evocation of Michael’s creative genius. Guided and inspired by his music, four misfits set out on a trans formative adventure. By journey’s end, they will personify Michael’s agility, courage, playfulness and love.

The name
Michael Jackson believed that all people are unique and equal, regardless of race or culture. His message was one of unity, harmony and hope for a better world. At once evocative and enigmatic, the name Michael Jackson ONE also presents a paradox: Michael was a multifaceted artist who strove to fuse together various musical styles and art forms. It is a fitting title for a unifying journey into the world of the King of Pop, the genius, the visionary, the One.

“This is our second project with the Estate of Michael Jackson which confirms how stimulating this creative partnership was meant to be”, said Daniel Lamarre, President and CEO of Cirque du Soleil. “Michael Jackson is an all-time phenomenal artist, both timeless and contemporary. As a creative challenge, this project is the ultimate. Through the use of cutting edge technology, we will produce a new Cirque du Soleil theatrical experience not only respectful of Michael’s legacy but also very distinctive from Michael Jackson THE IMMORTAL World Tour.”

“We are guided by Michael’s own philosophy in all that we do. In preparing for this production, Michael’s message to the cast and crew for his This Is It concerts was foremost in our minds. He counseled them on what the audience experience should be: ‘They want wonderful experiences. We want to take them places that they’ve never been before. We want to show them talent like they’ve never seen before. We’re putting love back into the world to remind the world that love is important. WE’RE ALL ONE. That is the message. ’ We feel the same, and that is what we are delivering both to lifelong fans and those just discovering his artistic genius with Michael Jackson ONE,” stated John Branca and John McClain, Co-Executors of the Estate of Michael Jackson.

Chuck Bowling, Mandalay Bay’s president and COO, said, “The partnership with Cirque du Soleil and The Estate of Michael Jackson represents an extraordinary moment for Mandalay Bay. We are in the midst of a major transformation at this resort, introducing a new set of experiences for our guests. Michael Jackson ONE is truly the crown jewel in that transformation and we cannot wait to share this very special production with the world.”

Along with Jamie King—who started his career as a dancer on Michael’s Dangerous World Tour and also directed the arena touring show Michael Jackson THE IMMORTAL World Tour by Cirque du Soleil—, Michael Jackson ONE will bring together the creative minds behind the Michael Jackson Estate, John Branca and John McClain.

Source: The Estate Of Michael Jackson / Billie Jean


Dr. Conrad MurrayMurray Ordered To Testify. 22-02-'13

A judge has ordered Conrad Murray to testify in the Jackson family's wrongful death lawsuit against concert promoter AEG Live.

According to legal documents, Mrs. Katherine Jackson wants Murray to testify about comments he made in his documentary, in which Murray said someone working for AEG told him, Michael Jackson was on "death skid row" and AEG owned "the toilet paper he wipes his ass with" and "the f**kin' popsicles that his children are sucking on" and "if he doesn't get the show done he's over." Mrs. Jackson thinks Murray's comments will help convince a jury AEG Live played fast and loose with her son's life, and that they hired the reckless doctor to care for him.

Murray fought the subpoena for his deposition, but now he'll have to take the oath next month.

Source: TMZ / Billie Jean


Blanket JacksonHappy Birthday, Blanket! 21-02-'13

Blanket, today it's Michael Jackson's youngest son his Birthday and he may blow out 11 candles.

Prince Michael Jackson II, also known as "Blanket", is the third child of famous pop-singer Michael Jackson. Born February 21, 2002, his mother is unknown to the public.

We are so proud of the upstanding young man you've become and we wish you a day full of laughter and love, surrounded by family and friends! Please know that you are in our hearts on this special day and always.

With Love,
Michael Jackson Fan Site Billie Jean

Source: Billie Jean


Doc Refuses To Answer Subpoena About Why He Gave Michael Jackson Clean Bill Of Health.
21-02-'13

Dr. David SlavitAn elusive New York doctor is refusing to answer a subpoena about the clean bill of health he gave Michael Jackson just months before the pop icon died, according to a suit filed in Manhattan Supreme Court.

Concert promoter AEG Live hired Dr. David Slavit to conduct a physical examination of the singer before his 2009 "This is It" series of performances in London for insurance purposes.

The pop icon's family is suing the concert promoter for pushing him to perform despite his failing health.

Based in Los Angeles, AEG claims that Slavit has repeatedly dodged giving a deposition about his suspect appraisal of Jackson's health and refused to release medical records since April of last year.

The company wants a judge to finally force the New York-based doctor to comply with the subpoena so that the wrongful death suit can proceed.

Phone calls to lawyers for AEG Live and Slavit weren't returned.

Source: NY Post / Billie Jean


Flights Over Neverland Ranch. 20-02-'13

Channel Islands Helicopters is pleased to announce the permanent addition of “Flights Over Neverland” to our lineup of signature helicopter tours! Created by Michael Jackson fans to commemorate the 2nd anniversary of Michael's passing, this exhilarating flight departs from Santa Ynez Airport (IZA) aboard our Robinson 44 airship for a breathtaking 30 minute arial tour. Loyal fans will be whisked through the stunning Santa Ynez Valley to the skies over Neverland Ranch- the sprawling estate that was home to the King of Pop for nearly 20 years.

Fans will also be able to pay tribute during the flight by dropping a complimentary sunflower atop nearby Zaca Peak- a 3000 foot summit overlooking the Neverland grounds. Don’t forget to bring your iPod to play your favorite Michael songs during the flight. The flight to and from Neverland provides some of central California’s most breathtaking countryside including the sprawling vineyards of the Santa Ynez Valley!

Channel Islands Helicopters

Note: This flight requires transport of the helicopter from our home base in Oxnard California to the take-off and landing point at Santa Ynez Airport. A $400 transport charge is added to the cost of the scheduled tour ($500). In the event of multiple flights for larger groups, only one transport fee will be applied.

Each 1 flower with personal note attached, not provided by Channel Islands Heli. Pilot reserves the right to deny the dropping of any item at any time.

Tour Length 30 minutes

Book your flight here.

Source: Channel Islands Heli / Billie Jean


MJ Estate Announcement: Press Conference About Las Vegas Show. 20-02-'13

For those of you who haven’t already figured it out based on the posts on the official MJ pages the last couple of days, there will be a press announcement on Thursday to reveal the name of the new Michael Jackson/Cirque du Soleil show which will live at Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas, the date of the premiere and the on-sale date for tickets (including a pre-sale to MJ.com newsletter subscribers). It is a completely new show – not Michael Jackson The IMMORTAL World Tour.

Check MichaelJackson.com or any of the official MJ social media pages for details on Thursday.

Source: The Estate Of Michael Jackson / Billie Jean


How Prince Landed The ET Job. 19-02-'13

Prince Michael Jackson (16) appeared as a guest correspondent for the daily US celebrity news show “Entertainment Tonight.” His interview of director Sam Raimi and actors James Franco and Zach Braff of the upcoming film “Oz: The Great and Powerful” will air in segments on the program throughout the remainder of the week.

Prince got the gig in part due to Brooke Anderson, one of “ET’s” correspondents. The tv host said in a phone interview to the Los Angeles Times on Monday evening that she and Prince shared a “mutual connection,” and she has been itching to do something with him since she met him.

“I thought him interviewing people from ‘Oz’ would be great because his dad was in ‘The Wiz,’ he’s a fan of ‘The Wizard of Oz’ and he wants to get into producing and directing.”

Filming took place over the long holiday weekend when classes were not in session. To help him prepare for the joint interview, Anderson sat with Prince and went over potential questions. She also gave him some tips on how to stay relaxed in front of the camera and even did some push-ups with him to eliminate any tension.

“He really did not need that much coaching. This may sound strange because he’s 16, but he was very smooth and confident."

Prince Jackson

During the interview, Anderson said all three of the stars were aware of who Prince was but did not turn the tables and ask him about his father.

“Zach said, ‘Is this really your first interview?’ He created a really great energy, and they were all surprised by how knowledgeable he was about the film industry. He knew technical 3-D terms that I had no idea about."

Though Prince does not have a permanent gig with Entertainment Tonight Anderson is hopeful he'll return on a "case-by-case" basis for kid-themed show business events, like the upcoming Nickelodeon Kids' Choice Awards.

"The fact that he's the King of Pop's son may crack the door open for him, but he has a wisdom about him. He said, 'I owe that all to my dad.' "

Source: MJFC / LA Times / Billie Jean


'Moscow Case 1993: When The King of Pop Met The Soviets' DVD Is Released. 02-04-'13

Moscow Case 1993 DVD CoverA documentary about the King Of Pop during his time in Moscow for the Dangerous Tour. The film tells the story of Jackson's ill fated concert that happen on September 1993.

The credits of Egor Trubnikoff’s brief documentary 'Moscow Case 1993: When The King Of Pop Met The Soviets' bear something of a self-evident dedication: “With deepest admiration to Michael Jackson, King of Pop”. Like much of the film itself, the treatment of Jackson’s ubiquitous epithet as if it were simply part of his name seems typically quaint and out of step with reality.

Having no footage of the 1993 Moscow concert, part of the Dangerous Tour, to speak of, Trubnikoff can hardly concern himself with conveying quite what it was like to attend the show. From the early, reverential talking heads assert Jackson’s status as an international superstar whose visit was a great event for the people of Moscow living in the city after Communism—and the insight stops there.

At 52 minutes, the 'Moscow Case' seems to check off its list of points rather matter-of-factly, never seeming rushed but always stopping short of a deeper investigation of the circumstances surrounding the concert. In reaching back almost 20 years (the documentary was produced in 2011), Trubnikoff makes an admirable effort to deliver first-hand accounts of the chaos and levels of unpreparedness involved.

Ruslan Miroshnick, the concert’s producer, speaks at length about the difficulties of staging the Dangerous tour, a performance of unprecedented scale for the Russian city. Trubnikoff can’t help that he hasn’t the access, or presumably the budget, to make the documentary more relevant to the concert itself, but it’s continually disappointing that so much talk about the particulars of staging and promoting a show as elaborate as Jackson’s precedes only a few courtroom-style colored renderings of Jackson and the interviewees at the show, accompanied by some embarrassing accordion music.

Regrettably, the documentary manages even to tamper with one of its biggest assets in the charming and engaging interviewees, only too happy to discuss the night they saw the King of Pop onstage in their home country. None of them seem capable of speaking English, so a rather dull dubbing job drains the enthusiasm from their accounts of the concert and its surrounding events, preventing them from really developing personalities over the course of the short running time and blurring them all together into a blithe Jackson superfan collective, some of whom even refer to the singer as a “saint”.

'Moscow Case' could only have been produced after Jackson’s death, and primarily for the footage shot by cinematographer Yuri Burak which shows him playing with small children in a Russian orphanage. In the canonizing afterglow of his death and worldwide mourning period, one might think that the footage could stand on its own, a previously unseen depiction of Jackson’s skill with children; instead, Trubnikoff includes some superfluous and ill-advised commentary on the sexual abuse scandal Jackson faced while in Moscow. Music critic Art Troitsky dismisses the scandals, which many have with good reason, considering the hyper-sensationalism and outright character assassination to which tabloids subjected Jackson during the -90s and the resurgence of the scandals in the early 00's.

Further comments that make a half-hearted effort to diagnose his psychological state, however, really toe the line of good taste: “He was a child at heart, so he wanted to play with children.” The seriousness of the subject of child molestation should hardly be dismissed in favor of half-baked psychiatric evaluations by fans, who are not ideally positioned to make objective judgements in the first place.

If nothing else, 'Moscow Case 1993' works as an artifact of Jackson’s thriving fandom. Overblown copy like the DVD description which describes the concert as “ill-fated” and promises details about “who wanted to see the concert fail and why” suggest grander drama than the documentary ultimately delivers. As a compendium of trivia and an interesting diversion into a landmark of Jackson’s career, the documentary certainly provides a good way to spend an hour. Consider it the fan’s alternative to the fireworks exploitation of This Is It, an effort by genuine admirers to delve into the behind-the-scenes process of the “King of Pop”’s unflagging commitment to putting on a show.

In its (admittedly facile) treatment of the show’s production, the ticket sales, and the experience of simply being in the same city as Jackson for a few days, what Trubnikoff’s documentary conveys best of all is the idea that constructing a superstar like Jackson must always be a communal process, and though this perspective merits a more in-depth treatment, there’s no denying that

boasts a certain degree of low-budget charm.

Publisher: ?
Series number: B00AMHFODE
Playing time: 92:00 minutes
Sound: ?
Printed: USA
Guide price: 15 €

Order the DVD here at Amazon.

Source: Pop Matters / Billie Jean

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