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Jacko merchandising deals on table

By | Published on Thursday 6 August 2009

Following his dominance of the music charts since his early departure in June, Michael Jackson could be dominating the merchandise markets in the coming year too. The administrators managing Jacko’s affairs have reportedly taken a number of potential merchandising and brand partnership contracts to the judge overseeing the late singer’s estate with a view to getting approval for those deals to happen.

Possibly realising that the dodgy t-shirt makers of the world are already cashing in with Jacko tribute garments, or aware that a long list of creditors is about to arrive at the door, administrators John Branca and John McClain seem keen to do some deals sooner rather than later.

According to Billboard, t-shirts, calendars, lighters, stuffed animals (that play Jacko songs) and video games are all being considered. Deals on the table are with AEG Live, the promoters of the canned Jacko This Is It residency of course, and also with Universal Music’s merchandising business Bravado. Presumably Sony Music would have to be on board for any products involving Jackson’s more famous music – though Universal’s Motown own the early stuff.

XBox is thought to be the console of choice for any new Jacko video game – not sure on the format of the game, maybe you have to pump your virtual character with enough propofol to get up on stage and dance, but not too much otherwise it’s cardiac arrest, game over.

Despite his freakish private life hampering mainstream merchandising to an extent in the latter part of his career, some reckon post-death the Jackson legacy could be worth more in merchandising terms than the $55 million a year Presley tat machine.

In related news, Billboard reports that the estate are now also in talks with Sony’s Columbia Pictures re the documentary the film company plan to make with the aforementioned AEG Live, utilising footage recorded during This Is It rehearsals.