Michael Jackson’s This Is It! show — the mammoth comeback production that was due to launch July 13th at London’s O2 Arena — may still come to the stage as a tribute concert to the King of Pop, MSNBC reports. The concert will reportedly replicate Jackson’s planned stage show for his 50-concert sold-out run, but with an all-star cast of performers filling in for the fallen singer. According to MSNBC, the This Is It! tribute concert will take place in the next few weeks. “Every major celebrity has been reaching out, saying they want to participate in the show,” a source working on the show tells MSNBC. “Kenny Ortega and Travis Payne have been given authorization to proceed in deciding who will take the stage,” the source adds, referring to Jackson’s director and choreographer.
The city and venue for the proposed show has not yet been decided, but MSNBC reported over the weekend that Los Angeles — whose Staples Center hosted the This Is It! rehearsals — is the frontrunner; the network now reports that the concert may be performed over more than one night.
On person who didn’t get a chance to pay tribute to Jackson at Sunday night’s BET Awards was Chris Brown. The young star’s camp began talks with the network just hours after Jackson’s death was announced, but “Chris was really hesitant when it was first proposed and actually turned BET down,” a source tells Rolling Stone. “When the idea of doing ‘Man In The Mirror’ was suggested, he came around. Chris wanted to do something to honor Michael, and thought that song was a good fit because it’s one he can relate to.” A BET Awards source notes, “To have Chris Brown there would have been too much of a distraction. He wasn’t nominated and was not invited and any sort of performance or MJ tribute was never confirmed.” Today, BET reps denied Brown was ever going to participate in the show, telling MTV News “the rumors are false.” As Rock Daily previously reported, the BET Awards became an impromptu celebration of Jackson’s life and career, and Michael’s sister Janet made an appearance to thank fans for their continued support.
In other tribute news, Harlem’s Apollo Theatre will be the site of a celebration of Jackson’s legacy starting today and continuing through tomorrow night, when the venue’s famed Amateur Night will be dedicated to Jackson and feature a Moonwalking contest, the New York Daily News. The Apollo will screen Jackson videos throughout the next two days, and invite fans to adorn the venue’s stage flowers and other memorabilia. reports
And the Filipino prisoners who had a viral hit a few years back with their rendition of “Thriller” have taken to YouTube with a new tribute to the King of Pop.