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CinemaCon surprise: Poignant first look at Michael Jackson biopic released | Hollywood


Las Vegas’ CinemaCon 2024 halls just reverberated with poignant applause. Bringing the Lionsgate CinemaCon finale to its emotional close, producer Graham King showed off the first-ever trailer of the Michael movie. Set to hit theatres on April 18, 2025, Antoine Fuqua (The Equalizer series, Southpaw) is directing the biographical musical drama.

Jaafar Jackson, Michael Jackson's nephew, plays his role in the Michael biopic.(Instagram / jaafarjackson)
Jaafar Jackson, Michael Jackson’s nephew, plays his role in the Michael biopic.(Instagram / jaafarjackson)

Released exclusively for the in-person audience in attendance at the CinemaCon this year, the footage breathed back Jackson’s charismatic magic to life on the screen.

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CinemaCon Exclusive: First look at Michael biopic

The trailer opens to the resounding echo of fans cheering on their favourite. Per Deadline, the video jumps back to Jackson as a young boy, being told by his mother, “There might be some people who think you’re different, and that’s going to make life a little harder for you, but you never were like anyone else.”

A following voice-over captures what performing meant to Jackson, who describes it as pure “magic.”

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The Hollywood Reporter also revealed that King’s project will include over 30 songs and may be deemed extremely “long” since it encompasses the King of Pop’s entire music story.

The film’s producer also addressed Jackson’s several scandals. He announced, “behind the unrelenting scrutiny” and the blinding spotlight, the Thriller hitmaker was “simply a man,” “who lived a very complicated life.”

The Man in the Mirror’s real-life nephew, Jaafar Jackson, plays the eponymous magnetic star. The feature also stars Colman Domingo as father Joe Jackson, Nia Long as mother Katherine Jackson and Miles Teller as manager John Branca.

Media reports suggest that the film hopes to go beyond the allegations of abuse and reveal the life of the man. Akin to the previously shared pictures on Jaafar’s Instagram page, the trailer also supposedly spotlights the striking resemblance between him and the real MJ, staying true to his presence as a dancing enigma.

In January 2023, the 27-year-old singer-dancer-actor took to his Instagram, sharing a snap featuring his uncanny resemblance to The Gloved One. He captioned the post: “I’m humbled and honoured to bring my Uncle Michael’s story to life. To all the fans all over the world, I’ll see you soon.”

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Jump to 2024, the first look at the upcoming biopic has left the audience dazed with a sneak peek into Jaafar Jackson’s rendition of Michael Jackson‘s Man In the Mirror. The ostensibly long-running film will get into “all of it” – the good and the bad of Jackson’s life. 

In addition to Michael (2025), the Lionsgate CinemaCon session rolled out announcements tied to upcoming projects, including Highlander starring Henry Cavill, Now You See Me 3, The Blair Witch remake, live-action Monopoly feature produced by Margot Robbie, Borderlands, The Crow, Never Let Go starring Halle Berry, The Strangers: Chapter 1, Guy Ritchie’s The Grey starring Cavill and Jake Gyllenhaal, Ana de Armas starrer John Wick spin-off Ballerina and more.



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