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Professor XMichael Jackson Wanted To Play X-Men's Professor X. 03-03-'17

Obviously it’s now hard to imagine anyone other than Sir Patrick Stewart playing Professor Charles Francis Xavier.

Least of all Michael Jackson.

But the King of Pop did indeed get a meeting about the role back before it had become the billion dollar cinematic franchise it is now.

Writer David Hayter – who penned the first ‘X-Men’ movie in 2000, then ‘X2’ and later Zack Snyder’s adaptation of ‘Watchmen’ – has spilled the beans on those who came close, but failed to snatch Logan’s cigar.

He told The Hollywood Reporter: “I was writing it [X-Men] for the comic book characters. I was brought on as they were casting, so I was lucky enough to be there for some of the people who came in like Terence Stamp for Xavier and Janet Jackson and Mariah Carey for Storm.

“Michael Jackson came in because he wanted to play Professor X. It was amazing.

“Shaq came in [for Bishop]. Viggo Mortensen came in. I really liked Viggo for Wolverine, but it didn’t come together for whatever reason.

“Angela Bassett was our first choice for Storm, but her agents wanted more money than we had at the time. Same with Rachael Leigh Cook for Rogue.”

We can perhaps see Mortensen as Wolverine. Jackson as Prof X? Not quite so much.

He also let slip about how Dougray Scott lost out on Wolverine to Hugh Jackman, and some of the cloak and dagger tactics that went into it.

“[Then-Fox executive] Tom Rothman really wanted Dougray Scott to play Wolverine and he was shooting Mission: Impossible 2 and Tom Cruise kept calling Bryan and saying ‘we just need him a little while longer, a little while longer,’” he said.

“We were starting to shoot and Wolverine was the lead and we didn’t have him. Bryan suspected something was hinky, and so he sent the costume designer down to Australia, ostensibly to get wardrobe shots, but really it was to find out what was going on.

“What we found out was Dougray had been in a motorcycle accident filming the climax of MI2. He was pretty messed up. It was a real shame he couldn’t do it. And Hugh had been somebody who had been in the mix earlier and it was [executive producer] Lauren Shuler Donner who said ‘why don’t we bring him?’”

And the rest is history…

Source: Yahoo / Billie Jean

Pre-Order 'The Invisible Man: The Story Of Rod Temperton, The 'Thriller' Songwriter' Book. 01-03-'17

The Invisible Man: The Story Of Rod Temperton, The 'Thriller' Songwriter' Book CoverA new book on Rod Temperton will be released on June 1st and includes his work with Michael Jackson.

'The Invisible Man' tells the remarkable story of how Rod Temperton worked his way up from a Grimsby fish factory to become one of the most successful songwriters of all time.

Born in Cleethorpes in 1949, Temperton embarked on a career in music with the funk bank Heatwave, for whom he wrote the international hits ‘Boogie Nights’ and ‘Always And Forever’, before his songwriting talent caught the attention of Michael Jackson’s legendary producer, Quincy Jones.

For Jackson’s 'Off The Wall' album, Temperton penned both the hit ‘Rock With You’ and the album’s title track. Three years later, continuing his relationship with the pair, Temperton started work on what would become the bestselling album of all time – Michael Jackson’s 'Thriller' – writing three songs, including the now legendary title track.

And yet despite collaborating with some of music’s biggest stars, including Donna Summer and Michael McDonald, Temperton was famously reclusive and seldom gave interviews, one of the exceptions being with author Jed Pitman, whose Sony Award-winning radio documentary on Temperton allowed him unprecedented access to the great man.

Publisher: The History Press
Author: Jed Pitman
ISBN: 978-0750982566
Pages: 224
Printed: UK
Guide price: 23 €

Pre-order the book here at Amazon.

Source: Amazon / Billie Jean

Michael Jackson’s Onetime ‘Neverland’ Ranch Gets $33 Million Price Cut. 01-03-'17

Nearly two years after it first went up for sale, the California ranch that served as the late pop star Michael Jackson’s “Neverland” retreat is returning to market for $67 million—$33 million off its original asking price.

It was originally listed in 2015 for $100 million but the property is now available for the bargain basement price of $67 million, according to the Wall Street Journal. The seller is a joint venture between Jackson’s estate and a fund managed by real-estate investment trust Colony Northstar.

The $100 million asking price “was a difficult number to achieve,” said Suzanne Perkins, who worked as the property’s 2015 listing agent.

Jackson lived there for more than 15 years after purchasing the property in 1987. Some of his most famous additions to the ranch include a train station and a flowery clock reading “Neverland.”

The revamped property is known today as “Sycamore Valley Ranch” and stretches to around 2,700 acres.

Neverland Ranch
Michael Jackson’s Neverland Valley Ranch – 5225 Figueroa Mountain Road, Los Olivos, California.

Source: Eurweb / Billie Jean

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