Oct 10 2010

Why did they want to make Michael look like Leonard Nimoy?

Category: Friends,Photos,Quotes About MJSeven @ 1:05 am

The photos below are said to be going up for auction soon. This is part of a series of photos done in a warehouse in Paris in 1999, by photographer Arno Bani. I’m not sure but I think the ‘blue eye‘ photo below is also part of this set. The one directly below titled “The Sphinx” was allegedly going to be used for the cover of Invincible. That one will be the centerpiece of the upcoming auction. But Michael didn’t like these photos, even before they were stylized to oblivion in Photoshop. This is why they were never used or publicized. I can’t say I blame him. They don’t even look like him. “The Sphinx” looks more like Leonard Nimoy (IMO) than Michael Jackson! Not that I have anything against Leonard Nimoy. But I expect a photo of Michael Jackson to look like a photo of Michael Jackson, not an overly-photoshopped caricature of someone (or some thing) else.

Who Is It?

"The Sphnix" - Michael Jackson or Leonard Nimoy?

Here’s what Karen Faye, Michael’s make-up artist and hairstylist for almost 30 years, had to say on Twitter about this set of photos:

…it was a photo session we did in Paris. Michael did not like the photos, so he never released them. Photoshopped to death. NOW Michael is no longer here to stop the release of the photos he PAID for…I guess the photographer feels free to sell them. I am SURE Michael would not have appreciated this remodeling of his image. The photographer wished to see him feminized & fantasized. I do find this sad. Because this image will be taken incorrectly by many. As an art piece, it is cool. Michael would appreciate the “artwork” also. BUT as a true photograph, not so much. Do you understand? Michael didn’t like the photos, that is why he never released them. Now you will understand why. It was not how he envisioned himself. SONY did not like them either. MJ showed me the original unretouched contact sheets. MJ requested MLB & I to be @ the shoot. INVINCIBLE cover was shot by Albert Watson in New York. I did that shoot.

-Karen Faye

KF added later:

Just talked to MLB. MJ told Bush that he destroyed all the Arno Bani negatives himself…Yikes. If this is true, this is really a betrayal. 🙁 It is also an example of artist wanting his art to live….I am torn in both directions on this one. Very controversial photos. All you can do is NOT BUY THEM. Art is based on AGREEMENT only. If the majority of critics agree that it is good, then it is deemed good art. If MJ & Sony didn’t like it, but Arno & his peers do…and people buy it…who is to say what is good or ethical?

All I can do is support my friend and share his feelings about the photos. Everyone must choose for themselves. Seeing these photos breaks my heart 🙁 Michael referenced other art to incorporate with his own ideas, often…hence, his massive book collection. These photos were taken in 1999. He did not release them in 10 years, do you think he would want it now? His unfinished music? Michael wanted to shoot with Arno Bani because he saw his work. Michael did not like the photos from that shoot. I can not be objective, with my feelings. I try to keep an open mind, but all I can do is share the truth. But the unpublished art is a treasure chest of hidden history created by a genius. What is right, what is wrong. Maybe it is just timing. Sony hated the photos. It was MJ’s choice to try this photog. But MJ did not like them either. Michael loved controversy. So I am going with; He is looking down, enjoying this. Helps me process it & gets me thru my day. The money distribution is in the control of greedy men Michael fired for conflicting interests. To me it is a matter of personal choice. I will never tell anyone what to choose for themselves. I will share my conflicted mind with u tho.

-Karen Faye

Who Is It?

Blue-Eye: Who Is It?

I never thought I’d see photo of Michael I absolutely did not like. I’ve seen photos of him looking annoyed, tired, or mussed up a bit, and sometimes he looked better than others. But it’s always a pleasure to see his photos.

But a photo of Michael I didn’t like? I never thought it would happen. And in a way I guess it still hasn’t. After all, these are not really photos of Michael are they?  Too bad they will be sold as if they are, and no doubt their being made public and for sale would be against his wishes, particularly if he destroyed the negatives himself!  The blue-eye one I can deal with. “The Sphinx“, not so much. Actually, not at all.

I’m sorry Michael! I wish there was something we could do.  We know this isn’t you and this isn’t what you would have wanted!

Below is the cover used for Invincible, done by Albert Watson. Now, that’s a little more like our Michael.

Invincible Cover by Albert Watson

Invincible Cover by Albert Watson

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43 Responses to “Why did they want to make Michael look like Leonard Nimoy?”

  1. MichaelPureSoul says:

    @ apleh It seems like this blanket could be folded double, so maybe that is why we see as it were the same on both sides when in fact we may be seeing only one side of it. Just a thought.

  2. Suzy says:

    The pic that you compared to Leonard Nimoy, my first reaction to it was: is this Michael at all?

    If Michael didn’t like it, I can see why.

  3. Suzy says:

    @ Marie Annie & Seven

    I totally agree with both of you! Michael was not gay and he wasn’t a pedophile, but I also hate it when some female fans want to portray him as a secret dog or a womanizer! And I don’t think he was this naive, saintly, asexual boy that some others seem to think about him either. I personally don’t think he only had sex while married (didn’t LMP say they had their first time before they got married?) but I think an emotional bond was important for him before going to bed with anybody. And I don’t think he had an emotional bond with many people. Certainly I can’t see him doing one-night stands or doing it with prostitutes or something! He had a very profound disgust about that kind of life, just listen to his lyrics!

  4. Karin says:

    Oh my, I freaked out when I first saw that Sphinx photo. My first thought was that it was portraying Michael as way too gay and kind of narcisstic. The haters just love it and are having a field day already.

  5. Inga says:

    Thank you for sharing this article Seven. I wanted to order this book for I liked the blue moon picture.
    The sphinx picture looks not like him!!! When I hear now , Michael didn’t like the photos and didn’t want them made
    public, it’s clear for me not to buy this book.I don’t support another money-hungry creature and I spread it
    to other people I know for loving Michael.

  6. Hayat says:

    @ June
    I’ve taken your advice into letting Amazon Know what we know now.
    I’ve asked them to put it in the description. I swear, I pre orderd it (cuz I love the Blue-eyed so much) before Seven posted this article, but inmediatley cancelled my order of the book.
    Simply, because Michael, sweet Michael, did NOT approve the pictures.
    Period.
    I wouldn’t want any of MY pictures – that I absolutely didn’t like – that have been overphotoshopped -put out there in the world for everyone to see, let alone to be exploited for money.

    The audacity of some people… it’s mindblowing.

  7. SandyK says:

    I think it’s unanimous concerning the “Sphinx” picture. Yuk!!! Definitely NOT Micheal. I don’t blame him for not liking it. I dislike it for all the reasons that have already been mentioned above. The “Blue-Eye” picture is interesting but I’d prefer it without the “blue-eye.” The “blue-eye” draws attention away from what is the most striking aspect of this picture and that is Michael’s very interesting and attractive face. Anyway, just my opinion…:-)

  8. Dialdancer says:

    I did like the artistic look of the so called “leaked” photo, but I am understanding how this photo which were reported to be made ready for a very exclusive auction made its’ way on to the Net. If they were commissioned by Michael and bought and paid for why is the photograph free to sell them in a book?

  9. Seven says:

    I’m not sure about that Dialdancer. I had assumed that since the work was Bani’s, he could sell it (even if Michael paid for them and for the work). However, Michael never wanted these photos released. He (nor $ony for that matter) liked them. In fact, from what I’m told Michael thought the negatives had been destroyed because he told MLB (Michael Lee Bush, his costume designer) that he had destroyed them.

    I chalk this up to yet another backstabbing vulture out to make profit off of Michael’s death. It seems to never end.

  10. Kathy Mann says:

    I fail to see the warmth in his eyes on both of these pictures. Usually you can see the depth in his eyes to his very soul, but these are not like that. Of course you can’t really see his beautiful eyes in the one with the blue eye but I know the usual look in his eyes isn’t there.

  11. Steph says:

    FYI – Karen also said something along the lines of absolutely not or definitely not or something like that when someone asked her straight out was that ever gonna be used as the cover for Invincible?

    Sigh………. 🙁 The good thing is that Michael always outshone anything they tried to do to him. Dress him up as a sphinx, paint one of his eyes blue…but look INTO the eyes and you will still see the beauty that was Michael. Not to say I support these pictures because, you know my thoughts on them…….but at least – at LEAST – we know that he outshone no matter what mess they tried to make him sit in. Just the eyes..

  12. Jacqueline says:

    Hi, dear Seven
    I was reading the comments of your posts and I just saw this beautiful answer you gave to Mary Annie about Michael NOT being promiscuous or whatever they want to call. I totaly, totaly agree with everything you said. You always talk about Michael with so much respect and love. That’s why I love your blog and it’s one of the few blogs I like. Because you only write things that I’m sure he would like to see written. Very sweet and truthful what you wrote above.

    I just wanted to ask you if you know where I can find Shmuley’s book online. I wanted to read it. I wanted to read it very much, but I coudn’t find it.

    God bless you.

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