MICHAEL Jackson almost landed some very big movie roles.
Not content to just be the King of Pop, Jackson also wanted to star on the big screen.
He played the scarecrow in 1978’s The Wiz and made a cameo in Men in Black II, but here are the other movie’s he was keen to star in:
STAR WARS EPISODE I: THE PHANTOM MENACE
Remember Jar Jar Binks, the Star Wars character that everyone hated?
The actor that ended up playing the CGI character in the 1999 film told Vice that Michael Jackson originally wanted the part.
“Me, Natalie Portman, and George’s (Lucas) kids — we were at Wembley arena at Michael Jackson’s concert,” Ahmed Best said.
“We were taken backstage and we met Michael. There was Michael and Lisa Marie [Presley]. George introduced me as ‘Jar Jar’ and I was like, that’s kind of weird.
“After Michael had driven off, we all go back up to a big afterparty. I’m having a drink with George (Lucas) and I said, ‘Why did you introduce me as Jar Jar?’ He said, ‘Well, Michael wanted to do the part but he wanted to do it in prosthetics and makeup like Thriller.’ George wanted to do it in CGI.
“My guess is ultimately Michael Jackson would have been bigger than the movie, and I don’t think he wanted that.”
CHARLIE AND THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY
Jackson was so keen to play Willy Wonka in the 2005 remake that he wrote an original soundtrack for the entire film.
“He thought it was the perfect role for him, and he planned to use the soundtrack, basically, to bribe his way into getting the part,” Jackson’s former videographer and friend, Marc Schaffel, said.
Warner Brothers loved the soundtrack and offered to pay big bucks for it, but they refused to give the singer the lead role.
“The reason Warner Brothers gave, when I pressed them, was, ‘we can’t have this guy starring in what would be a children’s movie. As a marketable idea, it doesn’t work’.”
Jackson didn’t handle the rejection well.
“Michael said, ‘If I can’t have the Willy Wonka part, then they’re not getting the soundtrack’, and he just basically shelved it,” Schaffel said in Untouchable: The Strange Life and Tragic Death of Michael Jackson.
Jackson was so keen to play Spider-Man on the big screen that he tried to buy Marvel in the 1990s.
“He felt that would be the only way that he could play Spider-Man,” Stan Lee said in a 2012 interview.
The legendary comic book writer wasn’t exactly against the idea of Jackson playing Spider-Man either.
“I think he’d have been good,” Stan Lee said.
“I think he’d have been very good. But I must say that Tobey Maguire was wonderful.”
According to Steven Spielberg, Michael Jackson “had always wanted to play Peter Pan”.
The director called Jackson and had a chat to him about potentially starring in the 1991 movie, but the storyline wasn’t exactly what Jackson wanted.
“I called Michael and I said, ‘This is about a lawyer that is brought back to save his kids and discovers that he was once, when he was younger, Peter Pan.’
“So Michael understood at that point it wasn’t the same Peter Pan he wanted to make,” Spielberg said to Entertainment Weekly.
But a Vanity Fair article published in 2003 claimed that Michael did not “understand”, as Spielberg put it.
It claimed Jackson was so angry with Spielberg that he paid a witch doctor $US150,000 to put a “voodoo curse” on the director in the hope he’d die.