Lionsgate has announced that rising singer-songwriter Jaafar Jackson has been tapped for the leading role in Antoine Fuqua’s forthcoming Michael Jackson biopic titled Michael. In his feature acting debut, Jermaine Jackson’s second-youngest son Jaafar Jackson will be playing his late uncle, The King of Pop.
“Jaafar embodies my son. It’s so wonderful to see him carry on the Jackson legacy of entertainers and performers,” The Jackson Family matriarch Katherine Jackson said in a statement.
“It’s incredibly exciting to watch Jaafar bring Michael to life,” Fuqua said. “There was such a spiritual connection when I first met Jaafar, who has a natural ability to emulate Michael and such a great chemistry with the camera.”
Michael will be directed by Antoine Fuqua from a screenplay written by three-time Oscar nominee John Logan. The biographical drama will give audiences “the never-before-told and in-depth portrayal of the complicated man who became the King of Pop,” reads the synopsis. 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.”
The film will be produced by Graham King, and the co-executors of the Michael Jackson estate, John Branca and John McClain. Production is expected to begin sometime this year.
Michael Jackson is considered one of the greatest musical artists of all time and is best known for a number of iconic songs including “Thriller,” “Billie Jean,” “Man in the Mirror,” and more. Throughout his life, Jackson won countless awards and was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, among other accomplishments. In 2009, he passed away at the age of 50 due to cardiac arrest.