Even in death Michael still a cash-cow to Jackson Snr
Rumour has it that if Katherine Jackson is granted permanent custody of Michael Jackson’s children, the brood could be raised by her eldest—and private—daughter Rebbie.
What a relief, when one considers the frightening prospect of Joseph Jackson playing a more permanent role in their upbringing.
Here is a man who has long been accused of ruling the famous clan with an iron fist and who, according to Michael, sat in a chair with a belt in his hand as the Jackson Five rehearsed.
While the mad dad this week protested on CNN’s Larry King Live (above) that he never beat his son, he can’t deny that he saw dollar signs in every move The King of Pop ever made.
Now we can shed new light on the patriarch’s final business dealings with his son, which show a pattern of exploitive behaviour continued right through until his June 25 death—and beyond.
In Michael’s final months, Joe—along with a confidante, Leonard Rowe—tried to push their way into the 50-show ‘This Is It’ concert series in London. According to Showbiz 411, Joe was furious that he had no part in the shows – and no financial cut.
Joe’s attempt at a partnership, however self-serving, was not uncommon. He was known to reach out to Michael only for business ideas and investment opportunities.
While Michael often supported his father financially, he refused to enter into any partnership with him again.
But it didn’t stop Joe and Rowe. For the record, R&B stars R. Kelly and Ne Yo last year successfully sued Rowe for fraud and were ordered to pay over $US4 million in damages by a Los Angeles Superior Court judge).
The pair issued a startling press release on April 2, which read: ‘Leonard Rowe, legendary promoter, to steer singer’s latest comeback.’ The press release, distributed to selected Jackson fan sites, can be seen here.
Their intent, it seemed, was to start booking shows without Michael’s permission and wrest control of his finances.
At the time, Michael’s advisors including Dr Tohme R. Tohme—a mysterious man in his own right, who served as the pop star’s chief adviser in the final years of his life—insisted Joe and Rowe had nothing to do with ‘This Is It’. Indeed, the Los Angeles-based concert promoter AEG Live, which was to produce the London series, reportedly advised Rowe to cease and desist or face the consequences.
On May 2, Michael finally wrote to Rowe (and by association, his father) and advised him never to contact him again. The letter, published on Radar Online this week, read: “This is to inform you that you do not represent me and I do not wish to have any oral or written communications with you regarding the handling of my business and/or personal matters.”
But ever the opportunist, Joe and Rowe aren’t even waiting until Michael is buried before cashing in. They have been making rounds on primetime television, and appeared together as soon as last Monday, on Larry King Live, peddling that Rowe was indeed still an active member of Michael’s inner sanctum when he died and making various accusations about AEG.
For one interview, Joe was reportedly paid $US200K to release never-before-seen home video. In another, a press conference intended to discuss Michael’s funeral plans, he promoted another venture – his own record label.
Joe has even been talking up his plan to turn Neverland Ranch into the next Graceland. Like Elvis Presley, he knows Michael will surely continue to make money.
The estate – and thus Joe – will also benefit from a concert film featuring footage from the King of Pop’s final days. Of the interested studios, Sony Pictures is reportedly leading the pack with a bid of $US50m.
Expect also to see books, a Jackson family re-union tour and maybe, just maybe, a Jackson Three – Prince Michael, Paris Katherine and Blanket.
After all, Michael’s death is a business — a profit-making venture. To his father, at least.
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