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Michael Jackson'La Isla Bonita' Was Originally Offered To Michael Jackson. 14-08-'17

Madonna has had a number of key collaborators over the years (Shep Pettibone, Stephen Bray, Mirwais and William Orbit all spring to mind), but Patrick Leonard was arguably the most integral to her legacy. Together they conjured up dozens of pop classics including 'Live To Tell', 'Like A Prayer' and 'Frozen'. He recently gave an interview about their working relationship and shares a couple fascinating tidbits. One of most interesting is the fact that “La Isla Bonita” was originally offered to Michael Jackson.

“After the Victory Tour, I was still in touch with Michael Jackson and Quincy Jones and doing some work with them and Quincy called me and said, ‘I want to do something sort of Sade-like for Michael — would you write something?’ and so I wrote that song and sent it to him with some form of a vocal on it and the phrase 'la isla bonita,’” Patrick tells Boy Culture. “He called up and said, ‘Ah, I just don’t think it’s for Michael.’ Madonna and I were getting together, so I showed it to her and she said, ‘Oh, I like this, let’s work on it.’”

“So we sat and changed, you know, whatever we changed and she changed lyrics and we reconstructed it. It’s a good song, for sure. I don’t know why she would return to that one more than others, to be honest. But I like it. It’s always easy — over the years, I learned to play 'Live To Tell' and I can play 'La Isla Bonita'. All the rest I have to re-learn them.”

Source: MJ Vibe / Billie Jean


South Park's Top 10 Celebrity Cameos Revealed As Show Turns 20: From Kanye West To Michael Jackson. 13-08-'17

South Park - The JeffersonsSouth Park has been keeping viewers in hysterics for 20 years now with its hilarious social commentary and cutting digs at some very famous faces.

Since first hitting our screens in 1997 and now spanning 221 episodes over 20 seasons, South Park has taught us, if nothing else, (probably nothing) that no one is safe from creators Matt Stone and Trey Parker.

Their unique brand of torturous mocking is so absurd that even the most super-cereal celebrities can do nothing but sit back and laugh - even Kanye West.

To mark 20 years of South Park we have dug deep into the archives of the cult show to bring you the best and most ridiculous celebrity ‘cameos’ ever have the dubious honour of being in South Park.

Michael Jackson - 'The Jeffersons':
A particularly significant episode as ‘Jeffersons’ marks the first time Michael Jackson was introduced to the world of South Park in role that he continued to reprise throughout numerous other series, playing a central role in another four episodes.

Stan, Kyle, Cartman and Kenny notice that someone new has moved into the Donovans' former residence. A little boy named Blanket tells them they moved to South Park to escape city life. They then realize the house is filled with toys and games, and the backyard is a funfair.

They meet Blanket's father Mr. Jefferson, a wealthy, eccentric, effeminate, pale-skinned man-child (obviously Michael Jackson wearing a fake moustache, though everyone remains oblivious and it's never explicitly mentioned).

Coming at the height of Michael Jackson's highly documented public problems, The Jeffersons spawned what might be the ultimate and longest running celebrity ‘cameo’ joke South Park have ever done.

Look here for South Park's top 10.

Source: Mirror / Billie Jean


Calendar 2018 CoverMichael Jackson Official 2018 Calendar. 11-08-'17

The official Michael Jackson 2018 calendar has just been revealed to Danilo, he will be released on September 14.

The king of Pop is back with a bang in this new 2018 official calendar. Features a collection of stunning images from Micheal Jacksons iconic music carear, each month also has a monthly date panel.

Specifications
Height: 420 mm
Width: 297 mm
Product code: 118
Guide price: 10,9 €

Order the calendar here.

Michael Jackson (Collector's Edition) Official 2018 Calendar.

Calendar (Collectors Edition) 2018 CoverThe official Michael Jackson (collector's edition) 2018 calendar has just been revealed to Danilo, he will also be released on September 26.

A square format is also released, this limited edition 2018 calendar has a special record sleeve cover & each month contains a classic photo of the king of pop Michael Jackson. This square format wall calendar also has a monthly date panel on each page with space for notes and appointments.

Specifications
Height: 305 mm
Width: 305 mm
Product code: 183
Guide price: 10,9 €

Order the calendar here.

Source: Danilo / Billie Jean


getTV Celebrates Michael Jackson’s Birthday With 4 Episodes Of Cher's Variety Show Ft. The Jacksons.
11-08-'17

Sonny & Cher Comedy Hour (1974)getTV will “turn back time” to celebrate the 59th anniversary of the birth of the “King of Pop,” Michael Jackson, on August 28 with four one hour episodes of Cher’s 1970’s variety series–with and without Sonny–featuring guest appearances by Michael and his siblings. getTV will kick off its Michael Jackson birthday party at 9PM ET with a 1976 “The Sonny And Cher Show” episode with special guest stars The Jacksons, Michael and brothers Jackie, Tito, Marlon and Randy and legendary comedian Bob Hope. The brothers appear in some comedy sketches and perform 'Enjoy Yourself'. Originally known as The Jackson 5, they became The Jacksons when their Motown contract expired and they went to Columbia Records, minus Jermaine, who was married to the daughter of Motown founder Berry Gordy.

At 10PM ET, getTV will air a 1975 episode of Cher’s solo variety series, “Cher,” in which The Jackson 5 (plus 2) Michael, Jackie, Tito, Jermaine and Marlon, with youngest brother Randy and little sister Janet appear along with comedienne Lily Tomlin. Cher and Janet share a brief interview segment, the guys perform 'I Am Love', and then Cher joins the guys for a medley that includes 'I Want You Back', 'I’ll Be There', 'Dancing Machine', 'Never Can Say Goodbye', and 'The Love You Save'.

At 11PM ET, a 1974 episode of “The Sonny And Cher Comedy Hour” will be shown, with the couple, when they were still married, welcoming The Jackson 5, “All in the Family”‘s Sally Struthers and country musician Tennessee Ernie Ford. The 5 perform 'Dancing Machine'.

Michael’s birthday celebration concludes at 12 midnight ET with a “Sonny And Cher Comedy Hour” episode from 1972 with The Jackson 5 and then-Governor Ronald Reagan. The Jackson 5 perform 'Looking Through The Window', and Michael sings 'Ben'.

Sonny and Cher’s first TV series, “The Sonny And Cher Comedy Hour,” began as a summer replacement series in 1971, but was so successful that the network brought it back that fall, and it continued to air until 1974, when the couple separated. The following year, Cher headlined her own series, “Cher,” for a season and a half, and then, post-divorce, she and Sonny reunited in early 1976 for “The Sonny And Cher Show,” which lasted another season and a half. Over the years, the shows received a total of 22 Emmy nominations, including three for Outstanding Variety Series, one for Outstanding New Series and one for Outstanding Single Program – Variety or Music, and received one Emmy award for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Variety or Music in 1972.

Source: Broadway World / Billie Jean


Thriller Album CoverMichael Jackson’s ‘Thriller’ Hits 300th Week On Billboard Charts. 11-08-'17

On the latest Billboard 200 albums chart (dated Aug. 19), Arcade Fire tops the list with its third straight No. 1, 'Everything Now'. The set earned 100,000 equivalent album units in the week ending Aug. 3, according to Nielsen Music. Of that sum, 93,000 were in traditional album sales. 'Everything Now' is the only album to debut in the top 10, as the next highest new entry is way down at No. 27: Vic Mensa’s The Autobiography.

The Billboard 200 chart ranks the week’s most popular albums based on their overall consumption. That overall unit figure combines pure album sales, track equivalent albums (TEA) and streaming equivalent albums (SEA).

Now, let’s take a closer look at some of the action on the latest Billboard 200 chart:

— Michael Jackson, 'Thriller' - No. 126 — Michael Jackson’s landmark 'Thriller' album becomes just the 16th album to spend 300 weeks on the Billboard 200. The former No. 1, which was released in 1982, climbs from No. 165 to No. 126 in its 300th week on the tally. Thriller debuted on the list dated Dec. 25, 1982 at No. 11, and rose to No. 1 on the Feb. 26, 1983-dated tally. It spent 37 weeks at No. 1 – the most weeks at No. 1 for an album by an artist. (Only the soundtrack to West Side Story spent more weeks atop the list: 54.)

'Thriller' is easily Jackson’s longest-charting album. It’s well ahead of his second-longest running effort, the 2003 greatest hits album 'Number Ones', with 220 weeks.

Source: Billboard / Billie Jean


MJ OneMichael Jackson Official Birthday Bash Full Details. 10-08-'17

On Tuesday August 29th, The Estate of Michael Jackson and Cirque du Soleil are hosting the 5th Annual Michael Jackson ONE celebration for the King of Pop’s birthday. Gather together with all of the other Michael Jackson fans for a celebration in Las Vegas and plan to spend the afternoon at the Michael Jackson ONE Theater enjoying all of the festivities! More surprises for events at Mandalay Bay to celebrate Michael will be announced soon.

Come celebrate the King of Pop’s birthday!

UPDATE: Announcing the schedule of events for the Michael Jackson Birthday Celebration!

3:00 – 4:00 pm – The Michael Jackson ONE Theater will be open for all guests. During the hour, the visitors will get a chance to:

– Get a sneak peek at actual artist training/rehearsal for two of the featured acts in the show.
– Participate in a Q&A with the cast and artistic team.
– Play a game of Michael Jackson ONE trivia. Prizes will be given to the winners.
-Enjoy a special performance by the cast members created especially for Michael’s birthday.
-There will be a commemorative T-shirt available to each person coming to the special afternoon celebration

4:00 p.m. – Annual Michael Bush book signing at the Michael Jackson ONE boutique.

-Mr. Bush will be available to sign copies of his book about his years spent working with Michael Jackson, “King of Style”.

5:30 – 6:00 p.m. – Meet & greet reception

-Meet and Greet in the theater lobby with The Estate team members, Jamie King, Rich & Tone and any other VIPs
-Cake to celebrate Michael’s birthday
-Step and repeat photo opportunity with artists
-Guests will have an opportunity to leave a birthday video message for Michael

Book here.

Source: MJ Vibe / Billie Jean


Wesley Snipes Talks Replacing Prince In Michael Jackson’s ‘Bad’ Video. 10-08-'17

Wesley SnipesActor Wesley Snipes was yesterday (August 9) the gust in the late-night talk show 'Late Night With Conan'.

On of Wesley Snipes big breaks in his early career was a role in Michael Jackson’s video for 'Bad' directed by Martin Scorsese. Outside of Wildcats and Major League, this might be his most recognizable role from his early days. It’s certainly a project that carried some heavy hitters along with it, but he almost wasn’t a part of it. As Conan points out, we don’t really know what to actually believe here, but Snipes says that Prince was originally supposed to play his character in the extended video for 'Bad'. Part of that is true, but the details around it are a bit more complicated.

Actor Wesley Snipes was the gast in the late-night talk show starring the former host of "Late Night With Conan'.

A meeting between Prince and Michael Jackson, arguably during the height of their powers over the music world, would’ve been something. But, the problem with this and with the story from Snipes is that Jackson and Prince had quite the rivalry during the 80's — something that our own Steven Hyden talks about in his book 'Your Favorite Band Is Killing Me: What Pop Music Rivalries Reveal About the Meaning of Life' — keeping it all quiet and boiling behind the scenes reportedly, with Prince even bailing on a planned contribution to 'We Are The World'. Will.I.Am shared a tale about inviting Michael Jackson to a Prince show in Las Vegas back in 2006, recounting it in MJ: The Genius Of Michael Jackson according to Esquire:

There was a point during the show where Prince was playing bass and he came out into the audience with this giant bass—he knew where Michael was sitting—and he walked right up to Michael and started playing bass in Michael’s face. Like aggressive slap bass. The next morning, Will went over to Michael’s house for breakfast, and they’re talking about Prince and the show. And then Michael goes, ‘Will, why do you think Prince was playing bass in my face?’ Michael was outraged. And then started going on. ‘Prince has always been a meanie. He’s just a big meanie. He’s always been not nice to me. Everybody says Prince is this great legendary Renaissance man and I’m just a song-and-dance man, but I wrote 'Billie Jean' and I wrote 'We Are the World' and I’m a songwriter too.’

Jackson also apparently mocked Prince during an on-stage meeting alongside James Brown in 1983, with the 'Billie Jean' singer saying Prince “made a fool of himself” after falling into the crowd after grabbing onto a fake lamp post on stage according to Consequence of Sound. And the stories seem to go on from there, with heated ping pong match-ups, digs in behind-the-scenes interviews, and even a few jabs in their music over the years.

In reference to 'Bad' and Snipes story from Conan, it was Prince who apparently turned down the chance to appear in the video. And the way he did it is apparently up in the air. One report from Prince’s biographer has the artist re-recording 'Bad' and sending it back to Jackson as a comment on who was really bad between the two, but according to Quincy Jones, the song was originally planned as a duet between the two megastars.

Prince himself commented on the song and video during an interview with Chris Rock, denying any existence of a rivalry and explaining that one line soured him on the plan:

“The first line of that song is ‘Your butt is mine.’ Now, who is going to sing that to whom? Cause [he] sure ain’t singing that to me, and I sure ain’t singing it to [him].”

Jones adds that Prince told Jackson during the meeting that “you don’t need me on this, it’s going to be a number one anyway,” which ended up being right. There’s clearly a rivalry under the surface, but it’s likely both exactly what people expect and nowhere near as heated as people are hoping. We’ll never truly know now because both are sadly gone, while Snipes is out taking credit for things on late night talk shows.

Source: Up Roxx / Billie Jean


Michael Jackson’s ‘Thriller’ Turns 35, New MJ Artifacts Displayed At Grammy Museum. 09-08-'17

Grammy MuseumIt's hard to believe that Michael Jackson's 'Thriller' is now 35 years old!

Yep, the number one, best-selling album of all-time has marked another milestone, and so to celebrate, The Grammy Museum in LA has rolled out some amazing artifacts from The King of Pop!

"It was really difficult to get them," Grammy Museum curator Nwaka Onwusa shared. "We worked with some great collectors and obviously the Michael Jackson estate who provided artifacts to this exhibit."

And that includes the "Gloved One's" famed military style jackets from back in the day, including one which weighs as much as 15 to 20 pounds!

"This was also worn during the Victory Tour in Kansas City in 1984, so he would have been performing some of those hits obviously off the 'Thriller' album like 'Billie Jean' in this coat here," Onwusa revealed.

But the thrills don't stop there!

Remember MJ's high school letterman jacket from the 'Thriller' video?

That's here, too!

"So, we are celebrating 35 years of Thriller," Onwusa said. "The album was released in 1982 and was produced by Quincy Jones and Michael Jackson. And that is actually his signature on the left sleeve there."

And even that famous white suit that MJ sports on the 'Thriller' cover is displayed at the exhibition.

And of course, perhaps the most famous jacket of all-- the one that launched a fashion craze in the 80's, along with parachute pants!

"We have this jacket here, and again, just pushing the button in fashion as well as music during that time," Onwusa added.

So many memories-- and all in one magical place! Go to the site of Grammy Museum.

 

Source: CW39 / Billie Jean


35 Years After 'Thriller', Michael Jackson’s Iconic Sunglasses Get A Modern Reboot. 08-08-'17

The Michael Jackson Estate revamps Michael Jackson sunglasses to celebrate 'Thriller'.

Grab a pair of sunglasses called MJ’s style. The King of Pop’s shades are receiving a revamp thanks to eyewear company Illesteva, which has teamed up with the Michael Jackson estate in celebration of the 'Thriller' anniversary.

The frameless sunglasses come in a thin reflective gold, a reinterpretation of the aviators that Michael wore during the late 80's and early 90's.

“Michael Jackson, one of the most iconic performers of all time, was rarely seen without sunglasses. When we think of him, the aviator immediately comes to mind,” says CEO and designer Daniel Silberman. “We wanted to design a shape that he would wear on stage today but combined with modern technology. The frame is made out of a 2.55 millimeter mask lens in custom gold gradient with lightweight steel temples.”

Only 200 of the glasses will be produced and will be priced out at $240 each.

Sunglasses
35 years after 'Thriller', Michael Jackson’s iconic sunglasses get a modern reboot.

Source: MJ Vibe / Billie Jean


'Michael Jackson: Searching For Neverland' Available On DVD 10/10. 08-08-'17

Michael Jackson: Searching For Neverland DVD CoverBased on the best-selling book written by the late Michael Jackson's most trusted bodyguards, Bill Whitfield and Javon Beard with Tanner Colby, the scripted film, 'Michael Jackson: Searching For Neverland', arrives on DVD October 10 from Lionsgate. Featuring the acting debut of Navi, a Michael Jackson tribute artist who worked closely with the pop legend as his body double for many years, the Lifetime® Original Movie gives an intimate view of The King of Pop both as a caring father and as a man enduring untold hardships during the last years of his life.

A behind-the-scenes perspective from those closest to the music icon, the Michael Jackson: Searching for Neverland DVD will be available for the suggested retail price of $14.98.

Based on the best-selling book, 'Remember The Time: Protecting Michael Jackson In His Final Days', and told through the eyes of Jackson's trusted bodyguards, Bill Whitfield and Javon Beard.

The movie will reveal firsthand the devotion Michael Jackson had to his children, and the hidden drama that took place during the last two years of his life.

Source: Broadway World / Billie Jean


Michael Jackson’s 'Thriller 3D' To Premiere At The Venice Film Festival. 07-08-'17

Michael Jackson’s 'Thriller 3D', long rumored and highly-anticipated by fans, will make its world premiere at the 74th Venice Film Festival, announced the Estate of Michael Jackson today. Creating Michael Jackson’s 'Thriller 3D', the original iconic short film, directed by John Landis and written by Landis and Michael Jackson, was not reedited or recut in any way. Rather Optimum Productions brought Landis in and together they supervised an elaborate and labor intensive process that began with the original 35mm film negative from Michael’s archives and resulted in a 3D conversion of the acclaimed film using the latest available technology.

To complement the enhanced visuals, all of the audio, including Michael’s music, Elmer Bernstein’s score and the sound effects, has also been updated to 5.7, 7.1 and Atmos standards in order to create the highest-quality audio and visual experience for in-theater viewing, which is how Michael and Landis intended the film to be enjoyed.

In making the announcement, John Landis said, “I am so happy to have had the chance not only to restore but enhance Michael Jackson’s 'Thriller!' We took full advantage of the remarkable advances in technology to add new dimensions to both the visual and the audio bringing it to a whole new level. Even though 'Thriller' was shot traditionally, I was able to use the 3-D creatively. Let me just warn you, there is a rather shocking surprise in there!”

John Branca and John McClain, co-executors of the Estate of Michael Jackson said, “Michael Jackson made 'Thriller' a rich theatrical experience: fun, funny, scary and wildly entertaining. No one before or since has made anything like it. Michael Jackson’s 'Thriller 3D' is a modern day technical enhancement of his and John Landis’ original vision, and I think fans will love it.”

Thriller 3D
Michael Jackson’s 'Thriller 3D' to premiere at the Venice Film Festival.

From the beginning Michael Jackson and John Landis set out to produce 'Thriller' with the aesthetics of a feature film. Michael was a fan of An American Werewolf In London, and called Landis to collaborate on the project. Academy Award-winning make-up artist Rick Baker was brought in for the elaborate prosthetic transformation of Michael and the cast. Michael Peters collaborated with Michael on the choreography. John Branca, Michael’s attorney at the time and now the co-executor of his Estate with John McClain, worked out a deal with MTV and Showtime for a first of its kind “making of” documentary, 'Making of Michael Jackson’s Thriller', to offset the cost of making the short film.

'Thriller' premiered at the AVCO Theatre in Los Angeles in 1983, and it sold out every night for three weeks. It remains the only music video to be inducted into the National Film Registry by the Library of Congress. It is fitting that Michael Jackson’s 'Thriller 3D' and 'Making of Michael Jackson’s Thriller' will premiere at the prestigious Venice Film Festival (the oldest film festival in the world) that will begin on Wednesday August 30th and ends on Saturday September 9th. The 'Making of Michael Jackson’s Thriller' was available on VHS from 1983-1990, and has never been available for purchase in any format since then. Its screening in Venice will mark the first time that the award-winning documentary has ever been shown in a theater.

Source: Coming Soon / Billie Jean


Selmo Wander To Exhibit Is Art Again In Brazil. 05-08-'17

Last April and back in 2016, Selmo Wander exhibit his art in Brazil which was really popular among the public and the fans.

Selmo is back with a brand new exhibition this month in Haras Morena Resort.

The exhibition cost R$150 (around £36) and includes a full entry to the exhibition, Lunch and tour. On Saturdays, you have a DJ spinning Michael’s music and a MJ Dance Class.

The Exhibition will run 17 & 20 August and then again 25 & 27 August.

Selmo Wander
Exhibition Tribute to the King of Pop, 17 & 20 August and then again 25 & 27 August.

For more information, click here.

Source: MJ Vibe / Billie Jean


Black Music Honors The Jacksons With Lifetime Achievement Award. 03-08-'17

The JacksonsThe Jacksons (Jackie, Tito & Marlon) perform and receive the Lifetime Achievement Award honoring their 50th Anniversary at the Black Music Honors taping on Friday, August 18th at 7pm at the Tennessee Performing Arts Center in Nashville! Tickets are on sale now at www.tpac.org or by calling 615-782-4040.

Black Music Honors is a 2-hour television special honoring legendary African American icons who have influenced and made significant contributions to American music.

The Black Music Honors also will feature the presentation of a variety of other awards, including the Crossover Music Icon Award Jody Watley, the Legends Award to Oleta Adams, the Hip-Hop/Rap Music Icon Award to Slick Rick and the R&B Soul Music Icon Award to New Jack Swing originators Guy. In addition, the show will feature performances by SWV, Kid 'N Play, Leela James, Marvin Winans, Da Brat, Sevyn Streeter and Karen Clark Sheard, among others.

The show will be co-hosted by TV and radio personality Rickey Smiley and singer/actress LeToya Luckett.

Proceeds from tickets sold for the Black Music Honors event will benefit the National Museum of African American Music, which is slated open in Nashville in 2019.

Source: ABC News / Billie Jean


'Motown The Musical’ Has The Moves And Grooves. 02-08-'17

'Motown The Musical' will be at the Durham Performing Arts Center Aug. 1-6. This is the tour's second visit to Durham. 'Motown The Musical' is the true American dream story of Motown founder Berry Gordy’s journey from featherweight boxer to the heavyweight music mogul who launched the careers of Diana Ross, Michael Jackson, Smokey Robinson and many more.

'Motown The Musical' is at the Durham Performing Arts Center this week, and it’ll make you want to get out your old Motown records. Packed with song after song from the Detroit-forged record company, “Motown” is a tour through the musical eras of the 1960's, 70's and 80's featuring The Temptations, The Supremes, The Four Tops and many, many more. The national tour of the musical is at DPAC through Sunday, Aug. 6.

On opening night Tuesday, one of North Carolina’s own gave a stellar performance as Marvin Gaye. Malcolm Armwood, an East Carolina University alum, stepped into the role for Jarran Muse. On most nights, Armwood is in the roles of Levi Stubbs, Mickey Stevenson, Contour, the Jackson 5 and Rick James. If that sounds like a lot of roles for one person, it is. The ensemble all perform in multiple roles, one after another, dancing and singing with energy throughout. And who is the dance captain who makes sure all that goes smoothly? Another man from North Carolina, Rod Harrelson, who was a cheerleader at UNC-Chapel Hill in the 1990's.

Motown The Musical
'Motown: The Musical' is a Broadway jukebox musical. the musical is based on the story of Gordy's founding and running of the Motown record label, and his personal and professional relationships with Motown artists such as Diana Ross, Smokey Robinson, Marvin Gaye, and Michael Jackson.

Led by Berry Gordy, who wrote the book for the show, the real Motown had a calvacade of singers come through the record label producing hit after hit. “Motown” brings audiences so many of those hits, from 'Stop! In The Name Of Love' to 'Shop Around' to 'Super Freak'. Chester Gregory is convincing as Gordy and David Kaverman embodies Smokey Robinson. The opening number medley of songs that quickly reminds you how much of our American pop culture is because of Motown.

What it also does is show the rest of America during that era, too, including the racism of the Jim Crow South. The scenic design illustrates an artists tour down South with black and white images of segregation. And the worst one is part of this state’s shameful history. One photo is of the Ku Klux Klan billboard announcing its “Klan country” presence in North Carolina. So there are several sobering moments amid the lively dance songs, reminding us about what was actually going on at the same time as the rise of Motown.

'What’s Going On' by Marvin Gaye (Armwood on Tuesday night) is one of the best songs of the musical, maybe because its message is such a classic, and relevant then as much as it is today.

While “Motown” brings up nostalgia for times audiences remember hearing those songs in their own lives, it will likely also bring in new fans. And while it’s a musical, it’s based on reality, down to the replicated outfits worn at the 25th anniversary Motown show and Diana Ross’ concerts. There’s a moment with Ross (Allison Semmes, who does a beautiful job) singing 'Reach Out And Touch Somebody’s Hand' that involves the entire DPAC audience. And Semmes as Ross invites an audience member or two to sing along, which garnered much applause on opening night for a woman from New Bern and man from Jacksonville who took to the spotlight with enthusiasm.

“Motown” is a welcome addition to the stage for August, but it’s only here through Sunday. Already its second visit to Durham, now’s the time to see it.

Source: Herald Sun / Billie Jean


Joseph Jackson Begs Michael’s Estate For $14k To Be Buried Next To Late Superstar Son. 02-08-'17

Joseph JacksonThe ailing famous father desperately wants to spend eternity lying next to singer.

Despite their family feuds and tumultuous father-son relationship, Joseph Jackson still desperately wants to spend eternity next to his late superstar son, Michael Jackson, so he’s petitioned his estate to fork out $14,000 for a burial plot next to his grave site, a source tells RadarOnline.com exclusively.

“Joseph isn’t quite ready to go, and he won’t be until he’s assured that he’ll be able to rest next to his son,” a family insider spilled to Radar of the ailing famous father, 89.

As readers know, Joe suffered a stroke in 2015 and was shaken up in a car accident in June. Meanwhile, with his his final days approaching he’s asked the executors of Michael’s estate to purchase a plot adjacent to the King of Pop’s final resting place at Forest Lawn cemetery in Los Angeles, said the source.

Before Michael’s death, the two feuded publicly, with the 'Billie Jean' singer accusing his father of abuse and keeping him at arm’s length. But despite their differences, our sources says, in private, the troubled singer often turned to his father for help. “About one month before he died, Michael had asked that Joseph move in with him,” snitched the source.

“Michael felt people were out to get him, and he was confident that nobody could push mean old Joseph around.” So, in late May 2009, Joe began making plans to leave his Las Vegas home in order to be with Michael in Los Angeles, according to the source.

“Joseph is terrified of earthquakes, which is why he lives in Vegas and not Los Angeles. But he was going to make the sacrifice for Michael,” the insider tells us.

But Joseph did not make the move to California before his beloved son’s life ended on June 25, 2009, from cardiac arrest due to a drug overdose.

“When he dies, he wants to rejoin Michael,” said the source. “It’s like he believes that it would make up for his not making it to Michael on time.”

Source: Radar Online / Billie Jean


‘Stranger Things’ Season 2 Was Originally Denied The Rights To Use Michael Jackson’s ‘Thriller’.
01-08-'17

Stranger Things Season 2When the 'Stranger Things' season 2 trailer debuted during San Diego Comic-Con, the energy in Hall H was through the roof. Not only does the return of the sci-fi horror show from the Duffer Brothers look incredible, but it was amplified to the max by the surprising use of Michael Jackson‘s iconic Halloween-themed hit 'Thriller'.

Since Michael Jackson himself was always picky about letting his music be used commercially, his estate has also taken on a tough stance when it comes to licensing any of the King of Pop’s tracks for use in movies, TV shows, commercials, etc. In fact, they are so picky about how Michael Jackson’s music was used that the Stranger Things season 2 trailer was originally denied the rights to use the song, so much that there’s an alternate version of the trailer that doesn’t use the track.

Speaking with io9, Netflix series producer Shawn Levy talked about the difficult process of securing the rights to 'Thriller' for use in the 'Stranger Things' season 2 trailer:

“It was the hardest thing I’ve ever had to pull off as a producer. It’s very, very hard, for reasons I won’t go into. We were rejected repeatedly for months. A month ago, it was over. We had another trailer that was being shipped to San Diego, and it did not have that song. The [Duffer] brothers and I would watch it, and it really ate away at us, because we knew it was a good trailer, but with 'Thriller' it’s next level.”

That means there’s a version of the trailer that was almost shown at San Diego Comic-Con that has a different song in it. Unfortunately, Shawn Levy didn’t reveal whether the music would have been another recognizable track or just a sample of the 'Stranger Things' score, but it’s hard to imagine seeing that trailer without the cool mix of Michael Jackson’s spooky signature tune playing throughout. So how did Shawn Levy end up getting the rights? He doesn’t give up any specifics, but says:

“I basically decided to be a massive pain in the ass. I went back into bullheaded producer mode, and I figured out a way to work out a deal to license 'Thriller'. That was a really happy day, the day that we finally pulled off that licensing arrangement.”

Not only does the music add something special to the trailer, but it’s the presence of Vincent Price’s voiceover that really brings the combination of pop music and ominous visuals to life in the best way possible. We’re just glad that 'Stranger Things' season two wasn’t forced to go with some kind of slow, haunting cover of another popular song, because that’s a trailer trend we’re sick of right now. However, even that would have been leaps and bounds better than the awful use of an Imagine Dragons song in the teaser trailer for Murder on the Orient Express, but thankfully, someone already fixed that trailer for us.

Anyway, 'Stranger Things' returns to Netflix for a second season on October 27, 2017.

Source: Slash Film / Billie Jean

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