Posted on Wed Jul 22, 2009 08:55 AM PDT
This was definitely news to us!
Michael Jackson apparently had a very close friendship with B-movie producer, writer and director Bryan Michael Stoller, and not only did the King of Pop appear in some of Stoller's films, they also had several other projects in the works!
Jackson had a role in the 2005 flick, "Miss Cast Away and the Island Girls," where he appears briefly as Agent M.J., who comes to the rescue of various characters on a beam of light. Jackson also starred in the 1978 picture "The Wiz," but Stoller tells The Hollywood Reporter that the late pop icon "never showed any interest in acting," but rather, he "wanted [to get] his hands on everything, from working on screenplays to producing, to writing the music."
So what else was the pop superstar working on prior to his death? Stoller says Jackson committed to co-directing and financing a drama about foster children, titled "They Cage the Animals at Night," which Stoller said he planned to get started on as soon as he completed his London concerts. The project was based on a 1985 book about the real-life experiences of author Jennings Michael Burch, who bounced around foster homes as a child. Jackson showed the book to Stoller in 2002 at his Neverland ranch and asked if he wanted to produce and co-direct a movie. Stoller tells THR:
- "Michael told me often he felt like he grew up as an orphan, like a foster kid, because he never was in one home. To him every hotel was like a different foster home. He said he used to sit in the window and see kids playing outside and cry because he couldn't be part of that."
Though insiders close to Jackson claim there was no formal deal due to the fact that Stoller's meetings with Jackson took place when the star was without management, Stoller says that he and Jackson had "a pretty serious meeting" about reviving the flick as an indie feature. "He wanted to do movies the Academy would like," Stoller said. "Michael was going to put up $8 million and not have to deal with any studios or producers and then take it to the studios afterward. He was very passionate about being a director. He was determined to make this movie."
So what about "Miss Cast Away and the Island Girls"? Check out the clips below:
Hmm...maybe he should have stuck to pop music?
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