Michael Jackson’s father has been cast in the upcoming biopic (Picture: Isaac Brekken/Getty Images)
Slated for release in 2025, the film has already been shrouded by controversy, with many of Jackson’s long-time fans expressing their disapproval.
Documenting the Thriller hitmaker’s rise to global stardom, his nephew, Jaafar Jackson, will play him.
Meanwhile, an Oscar nominee has been revealed as the star portraying American talent manager and patriarch of the Jackson family of entertainers, Joe Jackson, who died in 2018.
Colman Domingo, 54, will take on the challenge, with the announcement coming just days after he was announced as a best actor contender at the 2024 Academy Awards for his role in Rustin.
Colman Domingo will play Joe Jackson (Picture: Emma McIntyre/Getty Images for Netflix)
‘It’s exciting to do it with Jaafar,’ Domingo told the publication during an upcoming episode of the Awards Circuit Podcast.
‘Jermaine Jackson’s son is playing Michael, and he is breathtaking, and I think Graham King, the producer, has assembled an incredible cast.’
He added of his role in a statement: ‘I’m excited to be a part of a film that explores both the complicated soul of the legendary Michael Jackson as well as his impact on music and culture as a global icon.
‘Not only am I fortunate to have a rich, complex, and flawed character to portray in Joe Jackson, but I also have a front-row seat for Jaafar’s incredible transformation.’
Director Antoine Fuqua said: ‘Colman has such incredible range – he puts in the work to deeply inhabit his characters and understand their true essence and motivation.
‘I’m grateful to be working with an actor with his passion and ability to portray the many sides of Joe Jackson: a husband, a father and a manager.’
He was recently nominated for an Oscar for his role in Rustin (Picture: AP)
Joe Jackson died in June 2018 (Picture: Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images)
Producer Graham King added: ‘Few actors present themselves with Colman’s screen presence and force of will.
‘We’re so fortunate to have an actor with his undeniable talent portraying Joe Jackson on screen. We couldn’t be more excited to have him join us on this journey.’
As well as Rustin, Colman is also known for his roles in The Colour Purple, Fear the Walking Dead, Candyman, and Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom.
He’s also picked various accolades during his career, including a Primetime Emmy Award and nominations for two Tony Awards, a Bafta, and a Golden Globe.
Meanwhile, there’s been a mixed response to the Jackson biopic so far, for which production officially began on January 22.
It remains unknown how the biopic will cover allegations of child sexual abuse against Jackson (Picture: WireImage)
There has also been backlash from non-fans, who turned against the singer following numerous allegations of child sexual abuse against him, which Jackson denied while he was alive.
As for the role of Jackson’s father, he, too, was a controversial figure.
In the late 1980s, his image was tarnished due to reports by his children that he was abusive towards them.
When he managed his family, he allegedly ordered each of them to call him Joseph, which contributed to several siblings becoming estranged from him.
He was long accused of making his children’s lives miserable, with Jermaine Jackson previously saying: ‘None of us can remember him holding us or cuddling us or telling us, “I love you”.’
Joe allegedly beat his children – sometimes using a belt buckle or the cord of an electric kettle -and the Jackson 5 were not allowed outside to play with other children.
Jermaine Jackson made some harrowing allegations of abuse against his father (Picture: David McNew/Getty Images)
Joe admitted to whipping his children (Picture: Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)
After school, they would rehearse for five hours a day.
As for youngest Michael, he is said to have borne the brunt of the worst abuse, being referred to by his father as Big Nose, later developing a nervous tic of constantly touching and covering his nose with his hand.
Following his own success in adulthood, Jackson did everything he could to distance himself from his father.
Many of the accounts of alleged cruelty from Joe come from Jermaine’s memoir, You Are Not Alone: Michael Through a Brother’s Eyes.
While alive, Joe admitted to whipping his children with switches and belts as punishment, but said he did not do so at random. He also claimed never to have used any hard object as he felt was implied by the word ‘beating.’
Both Joe and Jackson’s mother Katherine denied the characterisation of abuse.
Michael is due to hit cinemas on April 18, 2025.
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