Sep 01 2012

Through more intelligent focus, many will actually see Michael Jackson again for the first time

Category: Academia,Books,Friends,Justice,VideosSeven @ 12:20 am

Tonight is a full, blue moon. It’s also the 25th anniversary of the release of Michael’s ‘Bad‘ album, and Mr. Spike Lee’s “Bad 25” film is out at a Venice film festival to fabulous and well-deserved reviews. Of course no one else could have properly created this documentary than Mr. Lee himself and of course he has done a fantastic job.

Prestigious universities are teaching classes about the human being and the genius Michael Jackson was. Great authors are researching, examining and publishing positive books about  his craft and creative processes. Finally, more people will see Michael Jackson – many for the first time, though they certainly knew his music and his name from media and tabloid stories. They did not however know who or what he really was. Now, they’ll have the opportunity to properly learn.

Thank You Mr. Spike Lee for creating a window through which the world will take a second look at Michael Jackson in ‘Bad 25‘. In the video above, Spike Lee describes his documentary film as “a love letter to Michael Jackson” and says “it’s time to concentrate on Michael’s music and let the other stuff go“. I certainly agree with that.

Thank you Joe Vogel for writing serious, well-researched books about Michael’s creative processes and his music.  Thank you Dr. Mark Anthony Neal at Duke University and Joe Vogel at University of Rochester for bringing Michael Jackson’s human nature, his genius and work ethic, the important nuances in his poor working-class African American upbringing, his struggles with race as an artist, and his cultural influence as the worlds greatest entertainer into the classroom for what absolutely merits serious study.  Thank you also to Sylvia J. Martin, Ph.D whose “The Roots and Routes of Michael Jackson’s Global Identity” is required reading for Dr. Neal’s course along with Joe Vogel’s ‘Man in the Music‘.

If you haven’t see this yet, here is an hour-long interview with Dr. Neal (done in 2009) about The Legacy of Michael Jackson (thank you David Edwards for locating this):

Video streaming by Ustream
All of these people are bringing a more intelligent, accurate and appropriate focus on Michael Jackson, who he truthfully was and what he meant in our society and our world. The phenomenon that was Michael Jackson is an important part of our cultural history. It should not be ignored or buried under media and tabloid bullshit. Now, because of these more realistically focused efforts, many people can (if they choose) see Michael Jackson for the first time, even if they thought they already knew who he was.

These are very positive changes. I just wish this had all happened over three years ago. Michael worked his skinny butt off at his craft all his life so he could give the world the very best of himself. He was honest and hardworking. He was overly-generous and idealistic. He was a driven genius. He was the best entertainer the world has ever seen. He really cared about this world, and I dare say he cared more than it cares about itself. The way things are going, it may be a good thing he’s not here anymore because the human race is destroying itself though he tried to enlighten us to save ourselves and each other through messages in his music.

I miss Michael and just wish he could have seen some of this when he was alive. I hope beyond hope that somehow his sweet soul can see it now.

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Jul 10 2012

Spike Lee Working on Michael Jackson Documentary

Category: UncategorizedSeven @ 5:53 pm

Spike Lee attends the BET Awards in Los Angeles.

SOURCE: http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/spike-lee-working-on-michael-jackson-documentary-20120710

Filmmaker Spike Lee is currently in the final stages of post-production of a Michael Jackson documentary that focuses on the King of Pop’s album Bad and ensuing world tour.

The film, which syncs up nicely with the album’s 25th anniversary, features 40 interviews done by Lee with Jackson’s confidants, choreographers, musicians and other collaborators. Lee also interviewed contemporary stars from Kanye West to Sheryl Crow (a backup singer on the Bad tour) about the album’s lasting influence.

“I’m more than just a huge fan of Michael Jackson,” said Lee in a statement. “And having the chance to actually know him and work with him, I deeply care about his legacy.”

The doc looks to tell the story of the “coming of age” project that led to a global tour that broke all sorts of records, as well as the revolutionary short films/music videos the album spawned, like the one for the title track directed by Martin Scorsese.

“Spike Lee’s genius as a storyteller combined with his passion and first-hand appreciation of Michael’s artistry makes him the logical filmmaker to tell the story of ‘Bad,'” commented John Branca and John McLain, co-executors of the estate of Michael Jackson. “We are thrilled to be working with him on this unique project.”

Back in 2009, Lee directed the clip for Jackson’s posthumous track “This Is It,” which used archival footage of Jackson mixed with his most unforgettable moments and a montage of fan tributes. The documentary will accompany the September 18th release of Bad 25, a box set celebrating the 25th anniversary of the record, which will feature an unreleased performance at Wembley Stadium in London on July 16th, 1988. No official release date for the documentary, however, has been announced.

“With this ‘Bad’ project I was able to uncover just what made this such a huge, important coming of age in his career,” added Lee. “And unearth compelling stories surrounding the making of the album, the long awaited follow-up to Thriller – the best-selling album of all time – the short films and the tour that may have never seen the light of day.”

Here’s a clip from the upcoming documentary:


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There are certain legitimate confidants of Michael’s that I know they did not and would not interview for this documentary. And, it’s hardly happenstance that its release coincides with the BAD25 promotion. It’s bound to a very interesting and historic piece. Spike Lee’s work is consistently phenomenal and rightfully well-respected. I can’t think of anyone else who would fit the bill when it comes to making this documentary. There isn’t much the estate has done since Michael’s death that interests me but this documentary does. It’s something that by all rights should have been done long ago, when he was alive and could add his own input. I’ll be looking forward to it.  -Seven

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