The Jackson family has responded to Joseph Fiennes' controversial depiction of the late pop superstar.
Two relatives of the Michael Jackson are deeply offended by the way that the late King of Pop is portrayed in the newly released trailer to the upcoming British show Urban Myths. In an episode of the "dramedy" series, Jackson is played by British actor Joseph Fiennes. Upon the release of the trailer, many on Twitter were outraged about the notion of Jackson being played by a white man. Not only that but some were disgusted at the sight of Fiennes' make-up job.
Jackson's daughter, 18-year-old Paris Jackson, tweeted that she is "so incredibly offended" about Fiennes' portrayal of her father, writing, "it honestly makes me want to vomit."
@TheMJCast i'm so incredibly offended by it, as i'm sure plenty of people are as well, and it honestly makes me want to vomit.— Paris-Michael K. J. (@ParisJackson) January 11, 2017
@TheMJCast it angers me to see how obviously intentional it was for them to be this insulting, not just towards my father, but my godmother liz as well— Paris-Michael K. J. (@ParisJackson) January 11, 2017
@TheMJCast where is the respect? they worked through blood sweat and tears for ages to create such profound and remarkable legacies. shameful portrayal— Paris-Michael K. J. (@ParisJackson) January 11, 2017
The episode in which Fiennes will star is called "Elizabeth, Michael & Marlon," and it will follow the characters of Elizabeth Taylor, Michael Jackson, and Marlon Brando on a road trip away from New York after the 9/11 attacks. The scenario involving the three legendary entertainers is apparently a popular urban legend in NYC.
Paris was also offended at the way that the trailer portrayed Elizabeth Taylor, who happens to be her godmother. "It angers me to see how obviously intentional it was for them to be this insulting, not just towards my father, but my godmother Liz as well," she tweeted. She added that the parody-style portraits of the esteemed stars are disrespectful to their legacies.
Taj Jackson, Michael's nephew and the son of his brother Tito, was also upset about the rendering of his uncle. "Unfortunately this is what my family has to deal with. No words could express the blatant disrespect," he tweeted in response to reporter Soleded O'Brien, who was also disturbed about the way he looked in the trailer.
Though both of the Jackson family members obviously find Fiennes' attempt at playing their father to be disgraceful, they did not specifically mention race in their tweets. It seems obvious that a white man should not play a black man, though the case of Fiennes presents a rare dilemma, seeing that the character he wishes to portray is Jackson some time in the decade before his death. During this time, Jackson's pigmentation had changed dramatically so that his skin color did resemble that of a white man's. This begs the question: Would opponents of Fiennes playing this role prefer that a black man portray Jackson when he was at his palest?