Following the success of Freddie Mercury biopic Bohemian Rhapsody and Elton John movie Rocketman, studios are taking more interest in charting the lives of music icons. Later this year Baz Luhrmann’s Elvis Presley blockbuster hits cinemas and now a take on Michael Jackson’s life and career has been announced. The film will be called Michael and has the backing of the late singer’s estate, which could impact how it deals with the child sex abuse allegations against the star during his lifetime and following his death in 2009.
Bohemian Rhapsody’s Graham King is producing the movie alongside Michael Jackson estate co-executors John Branca and John McClain.
Oscar-nominated screenwriter John Logan, best known for Gladiator and James Bond movies Skyfall and Spectre, is penning the script. Who will play the singer is yet to be announced.
A press release for the biopic read: “Michael will give audiences an in-depth portrayal of the complicated man who became the King of Pop. It will bring to life Jackson’s most iconic performances as it gives an informed insight into the entertainer’s artistic process and personal life.”
King said: “I first met the Jackson family in 1981 and I’m humbled to bring their legacy to the big screen. Sitting at Dodger Stadium watching the Victory Tour, I could never have imagined that nearly 38 years later I would get the privilege to be a part of this film.”
The personal physician was found guilty of involuntary manslaughter for improperly administering the anaesthetic drug propofol that led to the star’s death.
He served two years of his original four-year prison sentence and was released on parole in October 2013.
Although the King of Pop continued to maintain his innocence until his dying day, further allegations against him of child sexual abuse surfaced a decade later in the 2019 HBO documentary Leaving Neverland from Wade Robson and James Safechuck.
How these accusations will be handled in Michael remains to be seen and a release date for the movie biopic is yet to be announced.