Michael Jackson Almost Played a Great Star Wars Role ‘In Thriller Makeup’
Michael Jackson may have been best known for his incredible musical talent, but he also had a hand in acting in projects like 1978’s The Wiz. But on top of this, did you know that he almost had a part in Star Wars? George Lucas seriously considered the King of Pop for the first of his prequels, Episode I: The Phantom Menace.
As it turns out, Jackson wanted to play Gungan Jar Jar Binks, who was played by Ahmed Best via a motion capture performance.
The actor, who had previously confessed that he considered suicide after his character’s poor reception, also returned to voice him in Attack of the Clones and Revenge of the Sith.
When asked if MJ would almost be cast in the role before him, he shared how Lucas broke the news to him. But this only happened when they first met Jackson and his ex-wife Lisa Marie Presley, Elvis’s daughter, who died last month at age 54.
Talking previously with VICEBest said: “That’s what George told me. Me, Natalie Portman and George’s children were at Wembley Stadium at the Michael Jackson concert. They took us backstage and we met Michael. There were Michael and Lisa Marie [Presley].”
Filming on The Phantom Menace didn’t begin until the summer of 1997, a year after the famous couple divorced after two years of marriage. However, for the next four years, Lisa Marie Presley intermittently tries to reconcile with MJ by traveling to different parts of the world to be with him. So presumably this was on one of those occasions.
READ MORE: Michael Jackson and Lisa Marie were together for years after their split
Best continued: “George introduced me as ‘Jar Jar’; and I was like, ‘That’s kind of weird.’ Michael was like, ‘Oh. OK.’ I thought, ‘What’s going on?’ After Michael left, we all went back to a huge after party. I was having a drink with George 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 with prosthetics and makeup like ‘Thriller’.” George wanted to do it in CGI. I guess ultimately Michael Jackson would have been bigger than the movie, and I don’t think he wanted that.”
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