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Antoine Fuqua to Direct Michael Jackson Biopic From ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ Producer

"For me, there is no artist with the power, the charisma, and the sheer musical genius of Michael Jackson," Fuqua said of the controversial King of Pop.

VARIOUS, VARIOUS - JUNE 25:  Michael Jackson performs in concert circa 1986.  (Photo by Kevin Mazur/WireImage)

Michael Jackson


Antoine Fuqua is taking on the King of Pop.

The “Training Day” and “Emancipation” director is set to helm upcoming Michael Jackson biopic “Michael,” IndieWire can confirm. Produced by Graham King (“Bohemian Rhapsody”), the film is set to give audiences the never-before-told and in-depth portrayal of the complicated Jackson 5 member and solo artist. The film will explore all aspects of Michael’s life, including his most iconic performances that led him to become the greatest entertainer of all time.

“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,” Joe Drake, Chair of Lionsgate Motion Picture Group, said of director Fuqua.

“Southpaw” director Fuqua 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.”

“Michael” is written by three-time Oscar nominee John Logan, who previously collaborated with producer King on Martin Scorsese’s “The Aviator.” Logan also wrote Ridley Scott’s “Gladiator.”

“Michael” will begin principal photography in 2023, with co-executors of the Michael Jackson estate John Branca and John McClain also producing alongside GK Films. Fuqua’s “Emancipation” and “Equalizer 3” cinematographer Robert Richardson is set to DP the film.

Pop star Jackson died in 2009 at age 50 of cardiac arrest caused by an overdose of sedatives. Jackson was accused of molesting young boys, with two alleged victims being featured in HBO’s 2019 docuseries “Leaving Neverland.”

Jackson’s ex-wife, Lisa Marie Presley, recently died after attending the 2023 Golden Globes for Baz Luhrmann’s musical biopic on father Elvis Presley, titled “Elvis.”

Late star Amy Winehouse is also being immortalized with biopic “Back to Black,” starring “Industry” breakout Marisa Abela as the iconic singer who died at age 27.

For a guide to all the upcoming musical biopics in the works, click here.

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