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Thread: Michael in the Media - Thread for Miscellaneous Articles

   
  1. #151
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    Default ‘Beat It’: Eddie Van Halen Never Saw a Penny From His Iconic Guitar Solo on the Michael Jackson Hit:

    In 1982, when Michael Jackson recorded his generation-defining Thriller, nearly every song on that album was a hit.

    “Beat It” was no exception.

    Van Halen lead guitarist Eddie Van Halen, who died this week at age 65, played the unforgettable guitar solo on what became a five-times Platinum No. 1 single, selling seven million copies worldwide.

    But the guitarist never received a cent from that success. Here’s why.

    How Eddie Van Halen was recruited to play guitar on ‘Beat It’

    In Edward Van Halen: A Definitive Biography, author Kevin Dodds reported that in 1982, “Edward received a late-night phone call from famed producer Quincy Jones who was producing Thriller” throughout most of that year.

    Dodds, a contributing writer on the website Van Halen News Desk, noted in his biography of the guitarist that Van Halen “thought the call was a prank and hung up.”

    As it turned out, Van Halen’s friend Steve Lukather was the main guitarist on “Beat It.” It’s not clear if Lukather or Jones or even Michael Jackson himself came up with the idea, but it was decided to get Eddie Van Halen for the track.

    “When it was discussed,” Dodds wrote, “Ed eventually revealed that he had done [his guitar solo] as a favor, for no money at all, for no points on the record at all.”

    Eddie Van Halen could have made a chunk of money off ‘Beat It’

    At the time of his death, Van Halen’s net worth was reportedly $100 million. Who knows what it would have been had he insisted on receiving a cut of the royalties from the enormously successful “Beat It”?

    Van Halen said, according to Dodds, “I was a complete fool, according to the rest of the band, our manager, and everyone else. I was not used. I knew what I was doing – I don’t do something unless I want to do it.”

    His ex-wife Valerie Bertinelli, according to Dodds, said, “Ed never saw a dime; nor do I believe that he ever thought to ask to get paid. That was Ed.”

    Quincy Jones’ tribute to Eddie Van Halen

    On Twitter this week, the legendary music producer who worked with Michael Jackson on Thriller paid tribute to the late guitarist.

    “RIP to the GREAT @eddievanhalen,” Jones said. “Even though it took a couple calls to convince U it was actually me on the phone U killed it on Thriller, & your classic guitar solo on “Beat It” will never be matched. I’ll always smile when I think of our time working together. Eternal love & props.”

    Rolling Stone in 2009 reported that the only direction Jones gave Van Halen on “Beat It” was “I’m not gonna sit here and try to tell you what to play – the reason you’re here is ’cause of what you do play.”

    https://www.cheatsheet.com/entertain...ete-fool.html/



    a female with major depression,generalized anxiety,behavioral and emotional disorder,ocd mild retardation, and learning disability. i'm not contagious but my smile is.

  2. #152
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    Default Eddie Van Halen Told No One About His ‘Beat It’ Guitar Solo

    Groundbreaking musician Eddie Van Halen’s death on Oct. 6 from throat cancer shocked his fans around the world.

    Van Halen left an indelible mark on music; in particular, millions got to know him through Michael Jackson’s Grammy Award-winning song, “Beat It.” Next to Jackson himself, Van Halen’s guitar solo was the star of the song.

    Yet Van Halen, after performing on the track, told no one about his role on it. Here’s why.

    Eddie Van Halen contributed his guitar solo to ‘Beat It’ in 1983

    In a 2012 conversation with CNN, Van Halen recalled the recording of what would become one of Michael Jackson’s greatest records. He was given the freedom to do as he wanted on the song, so he did.

    “Michael left to go across the hall to do some children’s speaking record. I think it was E.T. or something,” he said. “So I asked Quincy, ‘What do you want me to do?’ And he goes, ‘Whatever you want to do.’ And I go, ‘Be careful when you say that. If you know anything about me, be careful when you say, ‘Do anything you want!’

    “I listened to the song, and I immediately go, ‘Can I change some parts?’ I turned to the engineer and I go, ‘OK, from the breakdown, chop in this part, go to this piece, pre-chorus, to the chorus, out.’ Took him maybe ten minutes to put it together. And I proceeded to improvise two solos over it.”

    Van Halen wasn’t sure what Michael Jackson would think of his work on ‘Beat It’

    Not only did Eddie Van Halen record the guitar solo for “Beat It,” but he changed and moved things around a bit on the song. He felt it sounded great, but worried that the Thriller singer would be furious.

    “I was just finishing the second solo when Michael walked in,” he recalled. “And you know artists are kind of crazy people. We’re all a little bit strange. I didn’t know how he would react to what I was doing. So I warned him before he listened. I said, ‘Look, I changed the middle section of your song.'”

    “And so he gave it a listen, and he turned to me and went, ‘Wow, thank you so much for having the passion to not just come in and blaze a solo, but to actually care about the song, and make it better.'”

    After recording his solo, Van Halen told no one about it

    Agreeing to take part in Michael Jackson’s “Beat It,” to Eddie Van Halen’s point of view, was a simple favor he was doing for the record’s producer Quincy Jones and for his friend Steve Lukather who was a principal guitarist on the song. And so, when Van Halen was done with his part, he never mentioned it to anyone and received no royalties on it. It wasn’t that big a deal to him.

    In Edward Van Halen: A Definitive Biography, author Kevin Dodds noted that “no one knew the impact Ed’s solo, all of 30 seconds, would have on the music world at large at the time it was cut. For the meantime, though, Ed’s stepping out would remain in the closet for about a year. He told no one about his participation. At the time, Eddie claimed he simply thought nothing of it.”

    That simple song would go on to win a Grammy Award in 1984 for Record of the Year and to sell 7 million copies worldwide. Not bad for 30 seconds of Eddie Van Halen’s time.

    https://www.cheatsheet.com/entertain...tar-solo.html/



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  3. #153
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    Default Michael Jackson Spent Millions on a Music Video Stephen King Co-Wrote

    Horror was a surprisingly large part of Michael Jackson’s musical career. In addition to “Thriller,” Jackson made another horror-themed music video — one which was far more extravagant. Here’s the story behind a music video Stephen King co-wrote which cost Jackson around $15 million.

    The movie that got Michael Jackson into horror

    Jackson worked with many famous movie directors during his career. One of them was Mick Garris, the horror director behind several adaptations of King’s work including the miniseries versions of The Stand and The Shining. According to Entertainment Weekly, Garris gave fans insight into how Jackson got interested in horror.

    “I’m really fortunate to have been able to work with, and become friends with, Michael Jackson,” Garris said. “It was right after [the release of An American Werewolf in London] — Michael had seen that and had been blown away by it. He wanted to do something on film like that. Michael was very frightened of horror films and was fascinated by the makeup [in them].” Thanks to King, Jackson and Garris would collaborate on an ambitious music video/short film called Michael Jackson’s Ghosts.

    Why Stephen King helped create the hugely expensive video

    King told Entertainment Weekly it all started with a phone call. Jackson called King on the set of The Stand and said he was a huge fan of King’s work. Jackson said he wanted King to help him make the scariest music video ever.

    King liked this idea because he figured creating Jackson’s proposed “minimusical” would be a welcome change of pace. King lauded the finished film, saying “the video contains some of the best, most inspired dancing of Jackson’s career.” On the business end of things, Garris revealed the budget of the music video ballooned to about twice its original size.

    “It had a very large transformation over the course of it and eventually became by far the most expensive music video ever made,” he told Entertainment Weekly. “We shot for two weeks and never got into the music video part because when you work ‘Michael hours,’ they’re not the same as regular hours. By the time everything shut down, we’d spent $7 million dollars. It ended up coming in at about $15 million dollars, all of it out of Michael’s pocket.” Jackson certainly invested a lot into the film — so how did the public react to it?

    How the public reacted to ‘Michael Jackson’s Ghosts’

    Over the course of its 39 minutes, Michael Jackson’s Ghosts includes three songs by Jackson: “2 Bad,” “Is It Scary,” and “Ghosts.” While Jackson had numerous hits, none of the songs included in Michael Jackson’s Ghosts reached the Billboard Hot 100. Compare this to “Thriller,” which reached No. 4. The music video might not have become a cultural juggernaut like the “Thriller” video, but it remains a memorable — and costly — collaboration between two icons: Jackson and King.

    https://www.cheatsheet.com/entertain...co-wrote.html/



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  4. #154
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    Default The Significance of Oct. 13 for Both Michael Jackson and Prince (EUR Video Throwback)

    *It’s been well documented that Prince and Michael Jackson were both personal and professional rivals during the height of their commercial success in the 1980s. But it turns out that both enjoyed significant career markers on the same date, 13 years apart.

    On Oct. 13, 1979, Michael Jackson’s single “Don’t Stop Til You Get Enough” topped Billboard’s Hot 100 chart, becoming his second ever solo number one hit after 1972’s “Ben.” On Oct. 13, 1992, Prince released an album with a symbol on the cover that represented both his new professional name and defiant independence.

    “Don’t Stop Til You Get Enough” also represented independence for Jackson. It was the first track on his fifth studio album “Off the Wall” in 1979, but more importantly, it was the first solo recording over which Jackson had creative control. Critics consider the track to be the first that also showcased Jackson’s talent as a songwriter.

    And who can forget the video, with its then state-of-the-art, 1979 green screen graphics and special effects showing Jackson in innovative triplicate.

    “Don’t Stop Til You Get Enough” went quadruple platinum, topped the chart in nine other countries and earned Jackson his first Grammy.

    Meanwhile, the album that came to be known as “Love Symbol” was actually an unpronounceable blend of the male and female gender symbols that Prince had featured on past album covers. He copyrighted an enhanced version of the image under the title “Love Symbol #2,” and began using it as his unpronounceable stage name from 1993 to 2001 in protest of his label, Warner Bros. Records. The label distributed the album, which was released on Oct. 13, 1992 by Prince’s own Paisley Park Records.

    Warner Bros. wanted the track “7” to be released as the first single.

    But Prince instead insisted that “My Name Is Prince” be the lead single, arguing that its sound would appeal better to listeners that had enjoyed “Diamonds and Pearls.”

    The “Love Symbol” LP was actually a concept album featuring dancer Mayte Garcia, who would become his wife four years later. In visuals for the album, Mayte played an Egyptian princess who falls in love with a rock star (Prince) and entrusts him with a religious artifact, the Three Chains of Turin (or track “Three Chains o’ Gold”). She is eventually captured, then escapes from seven assassins, as referenced in “7.”

    The original cut of the album had eight spoken segues to help tell this story, but most of them had to be cut for time when Prince decided to add one last song, “I Wanna Melt With U,” instead of making it the B-side to the “7” maxi single, as was the original plan.

    MJ reportedly said that Prince was “nasty” and “one of the rudest people I’ve ever met.” Although Prince and MJ were rivals, they were respectfully competitive. Prince’s good friend Tavis Smiley told Conan O’Brien that Prince was devastated by Jackson’s death and “[locked] himself literally in his room for days, and didn’t come out. Didn’t talk to anybody.”

    There are videos of Prince playing Michael Jackson songs in concert as a salute to the King of Pop following his death. Below is one of them.

    Prince dips into the MJ song that reached number one on the very date that he would release his pivotal “Love Symbol” album 13 years later.

    https://eurweb.com/2020/10/13/the-si...deo-throwback/



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  5. #155
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    Default Mike tyson tells how he met michael jackson

    In a recent interview with podcaster T.I’s expediTIously, Mike Tyson talked about the first time he met Michael Jackson and how his relationship grown after the pop superstar blanked him.

    “Mike is interesting, right,” Tyson said. “I met Mike one day, I think he was at a concert in Cleveland, I’m with Don King. So me and Don come in, right? And I’m champ and everything, did all this s–t, undisputed. So Don goes and Don gives Michael Jackson the ‘peace’ sign, like this. And then so Michael gives Don the ‘peace; sign, and so I give Michael the ‘peace’ sign, and Michael put his hand down. In a way, I say, ‘Did he play me? Nah, he didn’t play me, he just didn’t see me. I knew he didn’t play me, cause I’m f—ing champ.”

    “So we went backstage, right? So I’m backstage, and so there’s his backstage, some of his singers and stuff. He’s on stage, it’s over I’m signing autographs and stuff, so Michael comes over and he talks to Don, he doesn’t talk to me. … I say ‘Let me just go on and meet Mike’, cause that’s really why I’m here, I want to meet Mike. And then I go over to meet Mike, … and he goes like this, ‘Don’t I know you from somewhere? Where I know you from?’

    “He broke my ego, he crushed me,” Tyson said. “I said ‘No, I’m just a fan, pleasure to meet you, sir. He said, ‘Okay’, and then he got out and went in the car”

    “So I hated his guts forever, Tyson said. “Every time Michael Jackson’s name came, I said ‘F–k that mother f—er’, and this and that and this and that …”

    But Michael Jackson invited him to “hang out”…

    “I said ‘Okay, I’m coming, I’ll be over there’, right?” Tyson said. “So I got on a plane, went over there, hung out, and we just started hanging out together. And I said ‘F–k man, he’s a good guy, but in my mind, I said ‘Why’d you play me though, Mike, why’d you play me like that? You knew who I was, why’d you play me?”

    Full interview here:




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  6. #156
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    Default Michael Jackson, Prince, and Bobby Brown Inspired This Disney Character

    Michael Jackson, Bobby Brown, and Prince each left their mark on pop culture — but few would guess they left their mark on Disney. One character from a 1990s Disney movie was directly inspired by all three of them. In fact, one of the songs he sings was directly inspired by Prince.

    How Michael Jackson and Bobby Brown inspired a Disney character

    The 1990s were a huge decade for the Walt Disney Company. Thanks to movies like Aladdin, Beauty and the Beast, and The Lion King, the studio was making lots of money and earning significant critical praise. Many saw the decade as the studio’s best period since Walt Disney died in 1966. Much of the material Disney produced during this decade was timeless — but some of it was heavily influenced by 1990s popular culture.

    Enter A Goofy Movie. While other 1990s Disney films are cultural touchstones, A Goofy Movie received less attention. However, it has a major following now. One of the most indelible elements of A Goofy Movie is a secondary character called Powerline. A major pop star, Powerline sings some amazingly catchy songs and shows off some great dance moves. In an interview with Forbes, the actor who portrayed Powerline, Tevin Campbell, discussed how the dance moves of two major stars inspired Powerline’s movement.

    “[The people at Disney] just had me do some dance moves [in front of a green screen] and I doubt if they based any of Powerline’s dance moves off of me,” Campbell said. “I was more of a dancer back then, I did choreography, but I was nothing like Powerline. I think they sort of took [inspiration] from a lot of people: Michael Jackson, you got Bobby Brown, you got all kinds of people that they took away from as far as dances, because I really wasn’t a [professional] dancer.” In a different way, Prince inspired Powerline as well.

    How Prince inspired ‘A Goofy Movie’

    Jackson and Brown were not the only superstars who inspired Powerline. In an interview with Slashflim, director Kevin Lima said Prince influenced the character as well. Powerline performs two songs in the film: “Stand Out” and “I-2-I.”

    Patrick DeRemer wrote “1-2-1” and said the title of the song was a throwback to Prince, who would sometimes use letters and numbers in the titles of songs he wrote. For example, Prince used “I Would Die 4 U” and “How Come U Don’t Call Me Anymore?,” as well as another famous song he wrote, Sinéad O’Connor’s ”Nothing Compares 2 U.” In addition, the synthesizers from both songs sound like the synthesizers from Prince tracks.

    Many of the Disney characters from the 1990s are based on characters from age-old stories like “Beauty and the Beast” or “Aladdin.” Powerline proved Disney could create a character who was a little more modern — while taking inspiration from major pop stars in the process.

    https://www.cheatsheet.com/entertain...haracter.html/



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  7. #157
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    Default Lenny Kravitz Recalls When Prince Called Him to ‘Mess With Michael’ Jackson

    Lenny Kravitz continues to rock during quarantine in Eleuthera, one of his homes away from home in the Bahamas. With the release of his first memoir, Let Love Rule, he’s been doing interviews about the book which discusses his childhood, family, and the early days of his career.

    Fans will have to wait until Kravitz drops a second volume to learn more about his rock star exploits, but he recently shared an anecdote about two other music legends: Prince and Michael Jackson.

    Lenny Kravitz shared long friendships with Prince and Michael Jackson

    In addition to having working relationships with both Prince and Jackson, Kravitz had genuine friendships with each artist. He once told Piers Morgan that Jackson was a beautiful human being and very professional.

    “A great father. He was amazing with his children. I spent time with the kids. We were all in the studio and Zöe would come, and we would all hang out together.” Kravitz said. “And he was a very good father. And he was funny—very funny. We laughed all the time and he could eat more than you think.”

    It’s pretty well known that Kravitz has a pair of Prince’s boots in his Paris home along with other pop artifacts, but the two also had a bond. He told Steve Jones of KLOS that he and Prince spent a lot of time together through the years.

    Kravitz described him as having two sides—the mythical genius and the silly, laidback Prince. Sometimes, Prince would even crash his friend’s concerts.

    Kravitz and Prince ‘messed with’ Michael Jackson

    Kravitz appeared on Naomi Campbell’s YouTube vlog as her latest celebrity guest and the two old friends chatted about their personal and professional lives. Campbell asked Kravitz to share his story about being in the studio with Prince and Jackson.

    He said that Prince called him and said, “I need you to be ready in 30 minutes. I’m coming to get you.” Curious, Kravitz asked where they were going and the purple one responded, “We’re going to mess with Michael.”

    They drove over to Sony Studios in New York where Jackson was working at the time. Kravitz said he booked the entire place for himself. “Prince and I went there and we hung out with him all afternoon and just had fun—made fun of each other, laughed, hung out.”

    Kravitz added that he felt normal sitting between the two of them as the “ruffian.” “I’ve got my dreads and I’m unshaven, probably a little funky,” he joked. “Prince and Michael are pristine. The hair is done. The makeup is done. Every crease is in place.”

    He said there are no pictures or videos that captured the special moment, but he was highly entertained by the two.

    Kravitz collaborated with each artist, has unreleased music

    Roughly 10 years ago, a leaked Michael Jackson track hit the internet called “Another Day,” a rumored collaboration between him and Kravitz.

    Kravitz later confirmed that he wrote and played instruments for the unreleased song and Jackson sang it. The leak caught him off guard. He issued a statement to say that he’d work to get the entire song released.

    He also teamed up with Prince in the studio and the pair worked on multiple songs together. Where are they? In Prince’s famous vault.

    According to his interview with Sirius XM, Kravitz said Prince called the songs souvenirs and put them away. He has a copy of one of them which he may share with the world one day.

    https://www.cheatsheet.com/entertain...-jackson.html/



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    Default The Kind Gesture Michael Jackson Extended to Kobe and Vanessa Bryant

    Among the influences in Kobe Bryant’s remarkable life were icons such as Michael Jordan, Magic Johnson, and Michael Jackson.

    From the King of Pop’s surprise phone call to teenage Bryant to his ongoing words of wisdom for the NBA star, Jackson left a lasting impact. Like many who met the late singer, Bryant had his own share of Michael Jackson stories to tell, and one of his memories involved his future wife, Vanessa.

    Michael Jackson was a friend and mentor figure to Kobe Bryant

    In an old interview with HBO’s Real Sports, Bryant spoke of the time Jackson called him when he was a rookie on the Lakers and encouraged him to be himself, in spite of those complaining he was too introverted.

    Bryant often cited Jackson’s work ethic as an example of what he applied to his court game. He once told Jimmy Kimmel that Jackson showed him how he composed music and trained for performances by studying those before him. “I thought I was working hard until I met him,” said Bryant.

    He also shared a story about hanging out with Jackson at Neverland Ranch. They did the zoo, watched movies in Jackson’s theater, and had dinner, but the onsite gas station amazed him.

    And Bryant stated on multiple occasions that Jackson was a generous, kind, and funny guy. Additionally, he gifted him books and movies for Bryant to learn from, including Jonathan Livingston Seagull by Richard Bach.

    That time Michael Jackson offered his ranch to Kobe Bryant

    Shortly after Jackson’s death in 2009, Time magazine tapped Bryant and a few other celebrities for a “Remembering Michael” feature piece. The late basketball great just won the NBA Finals MVP award approximately two weeks prior and spoke fondly of his friend.

    “Beyond the genius of what he was, he was just a genuinely, genuinely nice person. He got me hooked on movies that I would normally never watch. Fred Astaire movies. All the old classics. I would never, never watch those,” Bryant said.

    He added that Jackson made a nice offer to him and his then-fiancée, Vanessa Laine.

    “I remember my fiancée and I telling him we were getting married, and him just being really excited and actually just offering up the ranch to have our wedding there, because privacy was going to be an issue. We wanted to get married in a church, so that’s what we wound up doing. But he made the offer. He was just a genuinely nice person who was exceptionally bright, exceptionally bright, and driven and talented. You mix those things together, man, you have Michael Jackson.”

    Bryant married his wife in 2001

    Kobe and Vanessa Bryant tied the knot at St. Edward the Confessor Catholic Church in 2001. The couple had been together for 20 years before Bryant’s tragic passing in January.

    It’s unclear whether Jackson attended the ceremony, but Bryant did tell ESPN that the phone call he received from the singer during his rookie year changed his life. “Michael Jackson was probably the biggest mentor I’ve ever had. That phone call in Gold’s Gym literally changed my life,” Bryant said.

    https://www.cheatsheet.com/entertain...a-bryant.html/



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    Default Shaq: Michael Jackson tried to buy my house

    On October 3, 2020, arguably the greatest center of all-time, Shaquille O’Neal revealed something incredibly interesting. He appeared on Jimmy Kimmel Live, and clarified that the King of Pop, Michael Jackson, tried to purchase his house at one point.

    He says Jackson showed to his house “wearing overalls and a big hat,” and only let him in “because it was Michael Jackson.” Jackson reportedly stayed upstairs in Shaq’s bedroom watching television in his bed for hours. When Shaq came to his senses, he went upstairs to confront him, and says Jackson told him “I wanna buy your house.” He respectfully declined due to the fact that his house was not for sale. Jackson then left the house and the two went their separate ways.

    Jackson apparently wanted O’Neal’s house so bad, that two years later, he reportedly showed up to his doorstep and asked to purchase it for a second time!

    https://www.talkbasket.net/108673-sh...o-buy-my-house



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    Default Michael Jackson ‘Thriller’: When zombies became part of pop culture

    “Thriller” was a hit for Michael Jackson, and it was a hit for the zombie horror genre, too

    Zombies have been around for a long time. From ancient cultures and their tales of the dead rising from the grave to horror legend George A. Romero and his cult classic Night of the Living Dead, zombies have always been a part of the cultural zeitgeist but it wasn’t until Michael Jackson danced with the undead in 1983’s iconic “Thriller” video that zombies really hit the big time.

    At the time, no one had ever seen a music video on the scale of “Thriller.” The concept was created by 80s super director John Landis (An American Werewolf in London) and Jackson, and the project was directed by Landis as well.

    When all of the elements came together, between the makeup, choreography, filming and Jackson’s performance, “Thriller” became so much more than a catchy song. It became a pop culture watershed moment that set the bar for music and music videos moving forward.

    “Thriller” also introduced whole groups of people to zombies and the zombie horror genre. The zombie makeup and Jackson’s werecat look, created by Rick Baker, was chilling. The zombies came to life and danced like their lives depended on it, but they were very clearly corpses that were fresh from their graves.

    Jackson, a devout Jehovah’s Witness, put out a statement clarifying that he did not believe in the occult after threats of excommunication came about. Though horror fans might argue that “Thriller” is relatively tame by horror standards, the National Coalition on Television Violence ruled in 1984 that “Thriller” was too violent.

    “Thriller” surpassed studio expectations and became the benchmark for videos moving forward, but horror fans also appreciate how it brought zombies out of the dark and into the spotlight. Fans who had never seen Night of the Living Dead were introduced to the genre, creating a new appreciation for the undead that has lasted through the years.

    Fast forward a few decades and zombies are hotter than ever with The Walking Dead franchise, World War Z and countless movies and television shows celebrating the undead, and Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” played a huge role in bringing zombies into pop culture.

    https://undeadwalking.com/2020/10/24...-walking-dead/



    a female with major depression,generalized anxiety,behavioral and emotional disorder,ocd mild retardation, and learning disability. i'm not contagious but my smile is.

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    Default This Horror Movie Inspired Michael Jackson’s ‘Thriller’

    Michael Jackson’s video for “Thriller” is one of the most iconic videos ever, however, it wouldn’t exist without a certain horror film. Jackson saw a classic movie and decided he wanted to work with its director. The director of the film had some reservations, but ultimately decided to work with Jackson for a very specific reason.

    The 1980s movie which inspired Michael Jackson to make ‘Thriller’

    First, a little background. 1980s horror movies stand out for their technical merits. Practical (non-CG) effects had reached their pinnacle, so horror filmmakers could use them to create surreal and convincing monsters and aliens unlike any seen before or since. Enter director John Landis.

    At first, Landis was most known for directing comedy films like Animal House and The Blues Brothers. However, he showed off his range with a 1980s horror movie called An American Werewolf in London. An American Werewolf in London remains among the most well-remembered film of the 1980s werewolf craze. It features a famous scene where its lead character transforms into a werewolf — a scene with memorable and convincing specifically effects. According to Bloody Disgusting, this film inspired Jackson to make “Thriller.” Landis recalled what happened when Jackson called him.

    What Michael Jackson told John Landis about his idea for ‘Thriller’

    “He called to say he was a fan of my film,” Landis told Vox. “He wanted to make a rock video where he turned into a monster and he felt he had the best song to do it with, ‘Thriller.'” Landis had some reservations about the project.

    “I thought, ‘I don’t know, because music videos are essentially commercials to sell records,'” he recalled. However, he changed his mind. “I decided to do ‘Thriller’ because it was an opportunity to do a proper musical number.” While working with Jackson, he learned a fact about Jackson which is very interesting given his artistic output.

    “Turns out he hasn’t seen many horror films, they were too scary,” Landis told Reuters. “I found him great. He wanted zombies, but the big thing for Mike was turning into a monster.” Jackson’s aversion to horror films is surprising given how he gave the world multiple horror-themed songs like “Thriller,” “Ghosts,” and “Is It Scary?” Landis revealed what it was like working for Jackson.

    “Michael was very determined that everything had to be the best, the greatest,” he said. “He had a spectacular work ethic, but he was an old pro, the guy has been performing since he was 8 years old.”

    The surprising public reaction to ‘Thriller’

    Both “Thriller” and its music video are classics, however, the public response to the song was not as strong as its reputation may suggest. The song merely reached No. 4 on the Billboard Hot 100. It was not one of Jackson’s biggest hits. Commercially, it was eclipsed by other Jackson songs like “Rock with You” and “Beat It.” However, its has an iconic video — a video which might not exist if Landis didn’t want to direct a musical number.

    https://www.cheatsheet.com/entertain...thriller.html/



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    Default Throwback: Michael Jackson’s ‘Remember the Time’ Video Was Packed With A-Listers

    Michael Jackson earned his status as The King of Pop with crowd-pleasing songs, unforgettable performances, and cinematic music videos. One such video for Remember the Time stands out as one of Jackson’s most elaborate mini-movies. And superfans may recall that the cast and crew were packed with icons from various spheres of entertainment.

    ‘Remember the Time’ boasted a crew of entertainment pros

    The music video for Remember the Time is more accurately described as a short film. Timing out at just over nine minutes, it tells an engaging story of temptation, jealousy, and even a little magic.

    Film icon John Singleton directed Remember the Time in 1992, one year after his riveting feature film debut, Boyz n the Hood. Singleton went on to write, direct, and produce other television and film projects. Some of his most popular titles include Poetic Justice, Higher Learning, and 2 Fast 2 Furious.

    When it comes to choreography, Jackson tapped dance pro Fatima Robinson to create the iconic sequences in Remember the Time. Fans may recognize Robinson’s work from various music videos, television shows, and films, including Save the Last Dance, The Wiz Live!, and her latest gig behind the scenes of Coming 2 America.

    Steering the song’s creative direction was Jackson, who co-wrote Remember the Time with Bernard Belle and Teddy Riley. Jackson and Riley also produced the track according to Spotify. With so much creative juice behind the scenes, it is no surprise that Remember the Time became a hit.

    ‘Remember the Time’ was full of Hollywood stars

    In addition to the geniuses at work behind the scenes, the on-screen talent was equally impressive.

    Comedian-turned-movie star Eddie Murphy owned the role of the all-powerful Pharaoh Ramses. By his side as the Queen of Egypt, supermodel and actor Iman radiated regality. As Herald, an officer of the royal court, basketball legend Earvin ‘Magic’ Johnson exuded strength with a dash of comedic flair. And, of course, in the starring role of a royal entertainer, Jackson stole the show.

    The short film told a story of a queen’s infatuation with a mysterious stranger

    As the director, Singleton brought his signature style of storytelling to Remember the Time. The guru spent nearly three and a half minutes setting up the main narrative before the music kicked in.

    The short film opens with a theatrical-style title card that reads, Remember the Time. Suddenly, the sands of time in an hourglass transport the audience to ancient Egypt inside the court of Pharaoh Ramses and the Queen of Egypt.

    “I’m bored. I want to be entertained,” says the Queen. With that in mind, the King arranges a slate of entertainment to appease his mate. In a booming voice, the royal servant, Herald, calls forth a series of artists, one after another. Each act disappoints the Queen, and she orders their executions as punishment.

    Last in the royal show lineup is a mysterious stranger who makes a magical appearance. The stage is set, the beat of the song drops, and the slick choreography begins. Jackson — as the stranger — is front and center with a slew of skilled dancers backing him up.

    He delivers a show-stopping performance, woos the Queen, and spurs Pharaoh’s jealousy. On the Pharaoh’s orders, the royal guards pursue and attempt to seize the stranger, who evades capture and actually manages to have a hot hookup with the Queen.

    After a dope dance sequence, the soldiers corner the stranger. With nowhere to run, he disappears into a swirl of enchanted sand and blows away. With stellar singing, dancing, and acting, Remember the Time truly solidified its place as one of the most unforgettable short films in music history.

    Follow Erika Delgado on Twitter.

    https://www.cheatsheet.com/entertain...-listers.html/



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    Default How Billy Butcherson Almost Took Costume Inspiration From Michael Jackson

    Ahead of the 1993 film's reunion, the actor remembers how the physical transformation into a "300-year-old dead guy" only took an hour and a half, and how that character ended up being a love interest for so many fans.
    "You’re a dead guy, you’re being risen from the grave to help a witch on her hunt for her magical book. You’ve got some history with her that’s not pleasant; you were once lovers and then she poisoned you and sewed your mouth shut."

    That's roughly what actor Doug Jones was told to prepare for his audition as Billy Butcherson in Kenny Ortega's 1993 Halloween comedy Hocus Pocus. The screen test took place in a dance studio, where he physically enacted those instructions, made the director laugh, and found out he had booked the role before he got home. Reading the actual script for the movie came later, and that's when Jones found out how substantial the role really was. Even though he only had one verbal line of dialogue — there was "tons" of visual dialogue throughout the entire film.

    "I’ve learned the difference now and the similarities that dialogue is dialogue whether it’s verbal or not," Jones tells The Hollywood Reporter, days before a Hocus Pocus reunion, with stars Bette Midler, Sarah Jessica Parker and Kathy Najimy, is set to take place 27 years after the movie first released.

    He did not anticipate we'd still be talking about this movie in the year 2020. "I thought we were going to have a huge box office hit and that my face might be on some lunch boxes and things, and some toys, and that it would fade out with time, like most movies might," says Jones, who as a child was heavily influenced by the "funny people" he saw on TV and in movies growing up, especially those characters who weren't the romantic leads. "I wanted to be one of them," he recalls.

    Jones adds that later on at parties, he would sometimes contort his legs behind his head, which garnered various shocking reactions. He was drafted into a mime troupe in college, which then ignited his performance career. "The first agent that I had knew that I was bendable, flexible, with the contorting thing on my resume and also the miming work, so that meant physical tom-foolery and often that comes with costumes and makeup so I was submitted for lots of roles that involved heavy costuming and makeup."

    Before Hocus Pocus, Jones had only appeared in one studio movie, Batman Returns. Now over a 30-year career thus far, he has transformed into various monsters, creatures and characters such as the amphibian man in The Shape of Water and the Mac Tonight Guy in a long-running McDonalds campaign, as well as performing in many roles where he appears looking more like "himself," such as Adaptation.

    Of his expectations of Hocus Pocus, Jones recalls that the film had the opposite effect to what he thought would happen. "It didn’t open very big and just got bigger with time, television airings and home video, people’s DVD collections, and now the fans that grew up with us are having kids of their own so we have a second wave of fans coming," the actor continues. "The movie is more known worldwide than it ever has been and with a bigger fan base than it’s ever had before."

    Morphing into Billy Butcherson only took an hour and a half each day, Jones explains, as makeup artists Tony Gardner and Margaret Prentice used a prosthetics piece for the face, neck and collarbone that was one piece, pre-molded and pre-painted. For the hands, they were just gloves that he would slip on. "I was baffled at the speed at which they did it," Jones says, adding that watching the artistry involved is a process he always finds stunning. "The best artists in the world have had their hands on me and transformed me into different things."

    Of the costume, Jones remembers that his look almost took inspiration from Michael Jackson — the "uniform" kind of outfit, with epaulets on the shoulders — as he was incredibly popular at the time. "I'm glad they ended up going with more of a period look," says Jones, adding that it adds to the "timeless" feel of the movie.

    Over the years, Billy Butcherson has been referred to as a "dateable" type of zombie. "I think he had a very sexy look to him, and that was pretty much thanks to the design of the costuming, the wig with the rockstar hair, and the bone structure of the prosthetic dead guy skin that was put on me, was really nice and sharp and angular," says Jones. "He was kind of pretty." The actor didn't specifically channel "sexy" though, in his performance. "I tried to channel goofy. The sexy look with the goofy act, I thought that was the formula that was going to sell this."

    The fact that Hocus Pocus has become, for so many people, "the" movie of Halloween is particularly nostalgic for Jones because it takes him back to his childhood when The Wizard of Oz was enjoyed annually by his family, whether it was Halloween or not. "It would air on network television once a year and it was a big night, the family would make popcorn on the stove and we’d make sure to be all home and sitting in front of the TV when it aired," he recalls.

    But the biggest surprise of Hocus Pocus for Jones is that the sexy and goofy Billy Butcherson was an on-screen love interest for many fans. "It’s quite special to me to think that a 300-year-old dead guy could spark a crush."

    https://www.hollywoodreporter.com/he...ichael-jackson



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    Default Michael Jackson: Star's private videos were held at RANSOM for six-figure sum

    MICHAEL JACKSON was plagued with a harrowing set of circumstances in 1999 when someone stole private video tapes of Jackson and his children, demanding a massive ransom for their return.

    Michael Jackson did not have the easiest of lives. He was constantly hounded by the press, was chased down streets on motorcycles, had his photos taken in every public space he went, and his children were followed. Jackson was even given a cruel nickname - ***** ***** - which he was called all the way up to his death. But perhaps the most tragic set of circumstances befell Jackson in 1999, when his possessions were stolen.

    According to reports from October 27, 1999, a thief had supposedly stolen some home movies from Michael Jackson.

    It is not certain how these home movies were taken, but it was confirmed that they were of Jackson and his children in their day-to-day lives.

    Included in these video was Jackson, his son, Prince, his daughter, Paris, and their trip to Euro Disney just outside Paris, France.

    According to MTV at the time, the thief was supposedly trying to sell the movies on to tabloids for publication.

    The thief was also allegedly holding these videos ransom from Jackson.

    According to reports at the time, the movies would only be returned if a huge sum of $100,000 was provided.

    Jackson's lawyers advised publications against publishing any snippets of these photos, threatening legal action if they did.

    One of the Beat It star's spokespeople, Howard Rubenstein, gave a statement on what was happening to the star.

    He said: "Any entity [that] publishes any portion of the stolen videotapes or any photographs taken [from them] will be subject to an immediate action by our client."

    The spokesperson added: "He thinks it's an invasion of his and his kids' privacy. He won't pay a dime [in ransom]."

    The spokesperson later added: "Any photographs or videotape which might be offered to the media depicting Michael Jackson and/or his children over the holidays at Neverland Ranch or at Euro Disney are stolen and should not be published by any entity.

    "Jackson is the sole and exclusive owner of the copyright in and to the stolen home videos and any stolen photographs made therefrom."

    ackson gave details about his hatred for his famed nickname, ***** *****, in an interview with Barbara Walters in 1997.

    Speaking about the tabloid press, Jackson told the host: "You should not say [I'm] an animal.

    "You should not say he's a ***** - I'm not a *****! I'm Jackson."

    He continued by condemning the publication that came up with the name.

    Jackson continued: "***** ***** - where'd that come from? Some English tabloid.

    "I have a heart and feelings, I feel that when you do it to me. It's not nice don't do it. I'm not a *****!"

    Jackson also spoke out about the press chasing him for photos of his child, Prince.

    He said: "There was a race. There were some illegal pictures out. Illegally, somebody had taken pictures of a baby and [sold it for] millions of dollars! And said: 'Here is Michael's son.' And it wasn't!"

    https://www.express.co.uk/entertainm...kson-blackmail



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    Default Behind The Song: Michael Jackson, “Billie Jean"

    Michael Jackson’s Thriller remains the single most iconic era of pop music, and for good reason. It still stands as the best-selling album of all time with more than 33 million copies sold in the U.S., as certified by RIAA. As awe-inspiring as that number is, the music itself is as timeless now as it was then, from the spooky titular cut to a song like “Billie Jean” and its slinky, provocative bass line.

    “She was more like a beauty queen from a movie scene / I said, “Don’t mind, but what do you mean, I am the one / Who will dance on the floor in the round?’,” he sings. The opening verse sets the scene of a woman hellbent with feverish adoration, sinking her claws into his life. Despite unreciprocated feelings, he can’t shake her loose.

    Once upon a time, roughly a year before the record was released, a young woman claimed one of her twins was his. In 1991’s “Michael Jackson: The Magic, The Madness, The Whole Story,” biographer J. Randy Taraborrelli claimed the iconic track took direct inspiration from this incident. One could surmise it to be true, all things considered, especially when it comes to the chorus:

    “Billie Jean is not my lover / She’s just a girl who claims that I am the one (Oh, baby) / But the kid is not my son, hoo!,” sings Jackson, a tinge of playfulness to his voice.

    However, Jackson states in his 1988 autobiography, “Moonwalk,” that “there never was a real Billie Jean,” he writes. “The girl in the song is a composite of people my brothers have been plagued with over the years. I could never understand how these girls could say they were carrying someone’s child when it wasn’t true.”

    He then dissects how the song came to him. “A musician knows hit material. It has to feel right. Everything has to feel in place. It fulfills you and it makes you feel good. You know it when you hear it. That’s how I felt about [this song]. I knew it was going to be big while I was writing it. I was really absorbed in that song,” he says.

    Jackson took a break from recording and went for a leisurely ride along Ventura Freeway with his longtime assistant Nelson Hayes. “[This song] was going around in my head, and that’s all I was thinking about. We were getting off the freeway when a kid on a motorcycle pulls up to us and says, ‘Your car’s on fire.’ Suddenly, we noticed the smoke and pulled over, and the whole bottom of the Rolls-Royce was on fire. That kid probably saved our lives. If the car had exploded, we could have been killed. But I was so absorbed by this tune floating in my head that I didn’t even focus on the awful possibilities until later.”

    In listening to “Billie Jean,” the bass line may feel more than a little familiar, and it is. Musician Daryl Hall, famously one-half of Hall & Oates, claims Jackson told him “directly… that he hoped I didn’t mind that he copped that groove. That’s okay; it’s something we all do.” The groove in question originally appears in “I Can’t Go for That (No Can Do),” off the duo’s 1981 record Private Eyes.

    There’s certainly a musical fingerprint present in both, even if “Billie Jean” beefs up the production with a slicker, more full-bodied style. Producer Quincy Jones didn’t like the bass line or the title, infamously pushing to change “Billie Jean” to “Not My Lover,” so as not to confuse with then-tennis pro Billie Jean King. Obviously, Jackson had his way.

    Perhaps expressing long-subdued resentment or ill feelings, Jones gave a candid interview with The Vulture in 2018, during which he stated Jackson was “as Machiavellian as they come,” he said. “I hate to get into this publicly, but Michael stole a lot of stuff. He stole a lot of songs. [Donna Summer’s] ‘State of Independence’ and ‘Billie Jean.’ The notes don’t lie, man.”

    He later walked back those comments in a series of tweets, as reported by ABC News.

    Regardless, “Billie Jean” is forever immortalized in the pantheons of pop music. The second single from Thriller, it reached No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 and won two Grammy Awards, Best R&B Song and Best R&B Male Vocal Performance.

    https://americansongwriter.com/billi...hind-the-song/



    a female with major depression,generalized anxiety,behavioral and emotional disorder,ocd mild retardation, and learning disability. i'm not contagious but my smile is.

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