Lionsgate officially announces that a new biopic is in the works about the King of Pop and legendary music icon Michael Jackson. The project, called Michael, has received the blessing of the superstar’s estate and will be directed by Antoine Fuqua, who is known for Training Day, The Magnificent Seven, The Guilty, and most recently Emancipation.
Joe Drake, chair of Lionsgate Motion Picture Group, said: “Antoine is a perceptive and powerful filmmaker, and we feel very fortunate that he has chosen Michael as his next project. His visionary storytelling skills and commitment to his craft will make Michael an unforgettable film.”
Fuqua on the other hand, stated: “The first films of my career were music videos, and I still feel that combining film and music are a deep part of who I am. For me, there is no artist with the power, the charisma, and the sheer musical genius of Michael Jackson. I was influenced to make music videos by watching his work – the first Black artist to play in heavy rotation on MTV. His music and those images are part of my worldview, and the chance to tell his story on the screen alongside his music was irresistible.”
The movie is set to start filming in 2023 and will be produced by Graham King, the mastermind behind the Freddie Mercury biopic Bohemian Rhapsody, and other Oscar-nominated features like The Departed. Speaking of Fuqua, King noted: “Antoine’s films provide personal perspectives of larger-than-life characters that continuously captivate global audiences.”
Michael is penned by Gladiator, Skyfall, The Aviator, and Hugo writer John Logan, who plans to focus on the never-before-told side of Jackson and his journey of becoming a Pop icon. The film will tackle all aspects of his life, in addition to the monumental performances that made him the greatest entertainer ever to have graced the earth.