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Michael Jackson Estate and Sony Music Partner for New Thriller Documentary

Michael Jackson Estate and Sony Music Partner for New Thriller Documentary

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LOS ANGELES (CelebrityAccess) – Michael Jackson’s Thriller remains the biggest-selling album of all time according to the Guinness Book of World Records, with over 67 million copies sold worldwide (which doesn’t count how many times the album has been downloaded/streamed). In addition, he also holds the Guinness World Records in (and this isn’t all of them):

  • Longest Span of United States Top 40 Singles (39 years and two months)
  • Most Charities Supported by a Pop Star (39 charities supported with monetary donations)
  • Most Expensive Jacket Sold at Auction (Black and red leather jacket with winged shoulders worn by MJ in the “Thriller” video – $1.8 Million sold to Milton Verret of Austin, TX)
  • Highest Annual Earnings for a Celebrity Ever ($825 million between October 1, 2015, and October 1, 2016)
  • Most Expensive Music Video (Janet Jackson and MJ’s video for their hit song “Scream” cost $7 million to make)

Forty years after the release of Thriller, the music legend’s estate and Sony Music Entertainment (SME) partnered to release a new official documentary showing never-before-seen footage and interviews during the album’s making.

The album was released on November 30, 1982, via Epic Records and is Jackson’s sixth studio album and the second as a solo artist. It produced a slew of hits, including “The Girl is Mine” (with Paul McCartney), “Beat It,” “Wanna Be Startin’ Somethin’,” “Human Nature,” and “P.Y.T. (Pretty Young Thing).

“Billie Jean,” the most-streamed MJ song, and “Thriller,” the only music video inducted into the elite National Film Registry of the Library of Congress, are also a part of the iconic album.

Thriller bagged a record 12 Grammy nominations and a record-setting eight wins, including Album of the Year. It was also the first album to be certified triple diamond by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA).

“The release of Thriller redefined Michael Jackson, taking him from teen star to adult superstar, who composed memorable songs, sang beautifully, and reached the highest level of on-stage performance,” according to filmmaker Nelson George, who is currently directing the documentary.

George, an American journalist, author, and music and culture critic, made his directorial debut in 2007 with Life Support, starring Queen Latifah. Latifah won numerous awards for that performance, including a Golden Globe, the Screen Actors Guild award, and the NAACP Image Award. That film was also named the best TV film of the year by the NAACP.

The Thriller documentary will be produced by Company Name and distributed by Optimum Productions and SME. It will mark the third documentary film focusing on a Jackson album following the release of Bad 25 in 2012 and Michael Jackson’s Journey from Motown to Off the Wall in 2016.

The King of Pop’s work has also been celebrated in several films, including This Is It, Michael Jackson ONE by Cirque du Soleil in Las Vegas, and MJ The Musical on Broadway.

“Michael opened and explored emotional depths and pushed the boundaries of sonic innovation on Thriller. In the process, he breached destructive barriers in the music industry and literally united the world through his music. There isn’t a place on this planet that hasn’t been exhilarated by the music of Michael Jackson. This documentary’s exploration of Michael’s process and impact is revelatory,” John Branca and John McClain, co-executors of the Michael Jackson Estate, said of the film.

Meanwhile, Tom Mackay, President of Premium Content at SME, said: “Michael Jackson’s Thriller marked a momentous and pivotal moment in both music and pop culture worldwide.”

“We’re excited to expand the estate’s documentary collection with our upcoming film and look forward to sharing it with fans around the world,” Mackay added.

Colin Hanks (Yes, the son of acclaimed actor Tom Hanks) and Sean Stuart from Company Name are the film producers, while John Branca and John McClain are the Executive Producers.

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