Michael Jackson’s family can’t wait anymore. They’re starting to plan events to cash in on Michael’s memory.

First, eldest sister Rebbie planned a tribute to Michael in Scranton, Pa., with a second-tier lead singer from the Temptations. It was too sad for me to write about.

Now Katherine Jackson has lent her name to a Michael fanfest set for just outside Gary, Ind., Aug. 26-29.

This is almost too sad to write about. If only Robert Altman were alive, he could film it as the sequel to “Nashville.” Promised for the event are Michael’s first cousin Keith Jackson, who promises in a video to exhibit his Michael memorabilia; self-published author Aphrodite Jones; and Omer Bhatti, the Michael Jackson imitator who is NOT Michael’s son but has tried his best to cash in on that rumor. Bhatti’s parents worked for Michael after offering up their 12-year-old son to him at a Tunisian hotel in 1996.

The International King of Pop Fanvention seems too good to be true. It’s being produced by a company called Fluid Prods., which is owned by St. Croix-born L.A. musician Padriac Coursey. It’s unclear whether he’s related to Gary B. “Court”’ Coursey, a controversial entrepreneur who once tried with his partner to get Michael to invest in an online ticket selling business.

And certainly, before too long, there will be issues of intellectual property since Jackson’s image is owned by his estate and not his heirs. His executors may have something to say about all this.

Author
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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