Michael Jackson's movie ambitions included 3-D film of 'Thriller,' 'Red Shoes' remake

In a sadly ironic twist, This is It has become the hit movie that Michael Jackson never managed to make while he was alive. Jackson’s most prominent big-screen role was as the Scarecrow in the 1978 flop The Wiz, but he continued to explore his love of movies with projects like the 14-minute “Thriller” video and Captain EO, the short science-fiction film he made with Francis Ford Coppola in the mid-1980s. In an interview for EW’s recent cover story, This Is It director Kenny Ortega revealed that Jackson continued to harbor cinematic ambitions right up to the end of his life. “He told me he wanted to create a partnership with me to do films,” Ortega says. “We were talking about doing Legs Diamond. And we were talking about doing a full-length, 3-D feature of ‘Thriller.’ ”

Amy Pascal, co-chairman of Sony Pictures, which is releasing This is It, says that over the years she and Jackson (who had a brief cameo in Sony’s 2002 sci-fi comedy Men in Black II) had discussed a number of film projects that never came to fruition. Perhaps the biggest was a musical fantasy film called Midknight that Jackson wanted to make with Batman production designer Anton Furst—a project that fell apart when Furst committed suicide in 1991. Says Pascal, “A million years ago, when I worked with [then-Columbia Pictures president] Dawn Steel, she and I tried to convince Michael to do a remake of The Red Shoes”—the classic 1948 British musical drama, based on a Hans Christian Andersen fairy tale, about a ballet dancer whose compulsion to dance ultimately destroys any hope she once had of a normal life, leading to her tragic death. The project never happened. “Michael’s life became The Red Shoes, I’m afraid,” says Pascal.

Comments (47 total) Add your comment
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  • Greg

    Never forget what a king MJ was. King. Humanitarian and all round legend.

  • kelly

    I have seen the movie twice now and I still marvel at the genius that MJ was. Its a stunning movie..

  • Deb

    Oh and he was not interested in killing people, he wanted to save them.

  • SherwinXL

    If I could use a Bret “The Hitman” Hart’s saying to describe him
    Michael Jackson is:

    The Best There Is, The Best There Was & The Best There Every Will Be!

  • SHANTE

    THE MOVIE WAS AWSOME AND HE DID SHOW A PART OF HIM THAT HE NEVA SHOWED BEFORE.HE SHOWED HOW MUSIC CAN COME ALIVE AGAIN I LOVE YOU MJ R.I.P.

  • kIERA

    i nevea seen the movie but all u haters that dnt go c it cuz u dnt like hym fucc you cuz u ant shit. LOVE THE BEST OF THE BEST MJ

    • s.

      kIERA, No offense but don’t let the haters get you to leave a message like this one, I’m not trying to be funny but “WWMD”. People are going to always going to hate something or someone who different. Don’t let them steal your joy of being a Michael Jackson Fan. For every one hater there’s 100 fans that love him and his music. MJJ..4ever more….Finally you can rest in peace!

      • Joe

        WWMD? Are you kidding me? He’d probably invite all these kids posting over to Neverland Ranch to play with him, Macaulay Culkin style.

        Sure, he was a pretty amazing artist, for many years. But he was also a pedophile, and a pitiful excuse for a human being.

        Dying was the best thing that ever happened for MJ.

      • Brandon

        Joe, you are total idiot, calling MJ a peadophile is the bullshit based on your madness and your evident frustration.
        Despite of no evidence, and the full acquittal, you dare call MJ a peadophile???

        What means the law for you?

        Nothing. The American justice is just a shit then. You can be cleared of the crime, but despite of that you have to be guilty…, right? (oh yes, the experts like you DO know the truth, and do know what happened, oh and do have the evidence right?)

        I wish you could be falsely charged of anything and see your appeal for the justice!!!

  • brittany

    i havent seen da movie but alll yall hatas out dere hait n on him f!!! yall. love mj b****** R.I.P.

  • brittany

    YEA MICHAEL JACKSON REST IN PEACE BABE WE LUV YOU TO BAD YOU GONE CUZ YOU MADE A HUGE IMPACT ON MANY PEOPLES LIFE

  • kiera

    NEVER 4 GET ABOUT THE BEST MJ ALIVE CUZ HE DID THE THANG ALL THE TYME.I ALWAYZ LOVE LISTING TO HYS SONGS CUZ I NO ALL HADE A TRUE MEANING. R.I.P. LOVE YOU NO MATTER WHAT

    • Go Back to School

      Brittany and Kiera, Please for the love of God spend less time watching****ty Michael Jackson movies and get an education. Reading your posts is an exercise in futility. Learn some basic grammar and spelling.

      • s.

        Go bk 2 skool, I hope you understand that there’s reason why they write like this and you just prove it. Who wants to take the time to read something like that unless you want to know what they wrote. It’s a style of this new generation, I don’t agree with it because it does create bad habits, mispelling but don’t be fool because some of these kids are honor students. I guess you meant TV and not TY…..There’s old saying to: “check your own background before you talk about someone’s elses.”

      • Deborah Ffrench

        There is no need to be rude, and by the way, knowing how to spell – you master of pomposity – is no indication that what one writes is worth reading. Why don’t you take in the heart of what they are saying rather than trying to put people down. It’s not big,it’s not necessary and it’s also unevolved.

  • Shaquata

    ima see da movie soon as i get dem new sneakas cuz i saw dem on da tv ya’lz hatazzz f*ck yall MJ 4eva

    • James

      Your English is flawless.

    • i guess the “S” stands for stupid

      Hey “S”, thought Brittany and Keira’s posts were the dumbest things I’ve read so far, until I came across your posting. HA, honor students, yeah right, GIVE ME A BREAK!!!!!!

    • tornado

      Wow you sound intelligent….tell us more.

  • William

    No, .s, he meant “ty” because he was ***ing out the word sh!tty.

    And if those kids are honor students, I’d hate to see how the kids at the bottom of the class write.

  • rhoda

    rest in peace mj thank u for the best years of my life watching u as a superstar.God bless u and r kids and family.

  • lisa rayside

    the movie was a bomb ALL musicians AND dancers need to see this to see what PERFECTION IS. rest in peace m.j we will love you forever. OH by the way THERE WILL NEVER BE ANOTHER YOU, IN THIS WORLD OR THE NEXT. PEACE OUT.

  • NM

    Saew the movie tonight and it is incredible, even for devotee like myself. It was so good that someone who came with me and had been sure Michael Jackson would not be singing live, came out raving about how fantastic he was, how exceptional a dancer and singer for someone half his age, and ate their words about him lip syncing as it was obvious he sang and danced without any sign of difficulty or loss of quality in performance. The saddest part is he is not here to enjoy the moment where those who have criticised him and claimed he was past it had to acknowledge his genius and talent.

  • Samantha

    Thats sad that pop star Michael Jackson isnt Alive anymore thanks to Dr murray.If Michael Jackson was Alive.He couldve make more movies.I Remember Back in 1978 movie The Wiz.He played the scarecrow.But I didnt see back then.Dr murray is sick in the Head.He should be proscuted for what he did that day.June 25th 2009.He overdosed pop star Michael Jackson.Thats why his Heart stopped pumping.That day.Also Thats why June 25th 2009.Pop star Michael Jackson was Pronounced dead.from Dr murray.Sick in the Head.Dr murray should be put in prison without parole.Make him pay for what he did that day.June 25th 2009.Pop star Michael Jackson was 50 years old.Still young.Dr murray is a very bad Doctor.I liked watching Pop star Michael Jacksons videos Bad back in 1987.Dirty Diana Back in 1988.The way you make me feel back in 1988.They were great videos back then.

    • im right

      nope sorry MJ killed himself, it wasn’t dr. murray. MJ insisted on pumping himself full of DRUGS and indeed killed himself!!!

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