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AEG talking to Sony Pictures about Jacko documentary

By | Published on Monday 20 July 2009

Reps from AEG Live, promoters of the doomed ‘This Is It’ Jacko residency of course, were reportedly doing the rounds of the Hollywood studios last week with a bid to organising a cinema release for the previously reported documentary on Jackson’s last few weeks.

As previously reported, AEG is sitting on a load of footage from the ‘This Is It’ rehearsals, footage that would presumably have been used as extras on a official live DVD had the Jacko O2 venture gone ahead. AEG boss Randy Phillips has already indicated he plans to release that footage in one way or another, partly to recoup his company’s investment in the pulled ‘This Is It’ residency.

As also previously reported, the only snag with those proposals is that Sony Music would have to give its approval if any of Jacko’s music was to appear in the docu, and let’s face it, that would be pretty essential. For that reason, while AEG reps reportedly met with at least three film studios last week, Sony Pictures is currently favourite to do the deal, in a rare bit of joined up thinking at Sony Corp.

The idea of a cinema release for the documentary is new, but could bring in a second layer of income ahead of a DVD release if it could be pulled off. Whether cinema screenings and a DVD release could both be achieved ahead of Christmas – a ‘This Is It’ DVD surely performing best in the Christmas market – remains to be seen. If AEG can pull off a Jackson tribute show for the end of August, as previously mooted, presumably footage from that could be included in the documentary also.

Elsewhere in Jackson footage news, Pepsi has said it has no idea how footage of a young Jacko catching fire while filming an ad for the drinks firm ended up on the internet. As previously reported, previously unseen footage of the 1984 incident, when misfiring pyrotechnics set Jackson’s hair on fire, appeared on the net via Us Weekly magazine last week.

A spokeswoman for Pepsi US told reporters on Friday: “We don’t know how the footage became available. This was an unfortunate accident that occurred more than 25 years ago. It was a terrifying event that we’ll never forget. We were grateful for Michael’s recovery [from the 1984 accident] and for the chance [we got] to continue working with him on a number of [other] successful projects”.