Wednesday, May 29, 2024

Michael Jackson: Joe Jackson Documentary in Limbo “Distributors Despised Him”


As Conrad Murray is released from jail today, we thought we’d catch up and find out what ever happened to the memoir and documentary about Joseph Jackson, Michael’s father. There were several announcements in the past about the two projects, called “The Architect,” which were going to explain how the elder Jackson wrought what he did.

According to a former producer on the documentary, George Paige, the documentary is now called “Making Michael.” Paige got out of the project a while ago, he told me, when it became clear that no distributor wanted it. “It’s all told from Joe Jackson’s perspective, and no one was interested. The distributors despised him [when they saw the film].”

Paige says the filmmakers needed $750,000 to finish the film and there was no way to come up with it. “It went back to the original investors, whoever they were.”

The guiding light behind the film, Johnny West, says “Making Michael” will be released “sometime after the first of the year.” He says has a distributor, but doesn’t want to announce who they are yet. West also told me there might be interest from the South by Southwest Film Festival.

In the doc, Paige recalled, Jackson senior reiterated that he and his family felt there was a “conspiracy” to kill Michael. Other than that, “it’s a clip job,” said. West confirmed that none of Michael Jackson’s music is in the film.

Neither of them knew anything about the status of the book called “The Architect,” announced two years ago with Atria/Simon & Schuster. The book isn’t listed anywhere. The editor from Atria has not returned calls. We’ll wait for an update.


Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
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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