« Michael had a five-year plan sketched out » 2009-2014
Jermaine Jackson : « You Are Not Alone, Michael through a brother’s eyes », chap 21 « Comeback King »
Michael was so excited about what the future held, and he had so many plans. He was buying a new property in Vegas and was determined to built a new Neverland, (…); he looked forward to a short residency tour so that Prince, Paris and Blanket could see their daddy on the road properly for the first time; he also knew that touring offered him the chance to regain control and make enough money so that he could, finally, clear his crippling debts. His outlook was positive again. His body was back in sharp. His focus was the future.
After his ‘This is it’ concerts were done, and he’d had a few weeks off, he looked forward to performing spot dates in China. In 2011, he was eyeing up the half-time slot at the Superbowl to repeat his legendary show of 1993. And then, some time before 2014, he had two more tours up his sleeve; ‘the back by popular demand’ dates that no one knew about. Despite what everyone thinks, the comeback concerts in London were the beginning, not the end. I know what Michael said in March 2009: ‘When I say this is it, this is it, it really means “this is it”… This is the final curtain-call’. That was his great tease: he was a master salesman, too, and if the world thought that London would be their last opportunity for see him perform, then they would rush to buy tickets. The rules of limited supply and big demand. Many misunderstood his commercial astuteness because he excelled at smoke-and-mirrors, mystery and big surprises.
Admittedly, it wasn’t all hype. He worried that the tickets might not sell, so the tour announcement was also a toe to the water, to test the temperature of the public mood – his confidence had been shattered by everything he had been through. (…)
Come 2008, Michael was not only hungry again, he had a five-year plan sketched out. (…)
(…) But, come 2008, Tom Barrack ultimately sealed the deal for Michael’s tour by getting fellow billionaire Phil Anschultz on the phone during that dinner. Phil is the owner of Anschultz Entertainement Group (AEG) and Tom said, ‘I’m got Michael Jackson with me. What can you do for him?’ That introduction kick-started an entire comeback strategy. On paper, it was a good union because Phil was a fellow humanitarian – he’d donated something like $100.000 to charity -- and he had a controlling interest in some of the largest sports and entertainment venues, including the Staples Centre in LA, and the O2 arena in London. As one of America’s wealthiest people, he also had a checkbook to match Michael’s vision. That was probably why my brother received almost everything he asked for in a long-term deal worth a guaranteed minimum payment of $36.5 million ‘with and an upside potential of $300 million’ based on tickets sale and other attached projects, which included a three-movie deals. From what I understood, he also ensured that a $15 million fee was built in as a down-payment on his new Vegas home. In other words, Michael didn’t just negotiate a single residency tour, he ensured that his future was secured. It included an agreement to do other spot dates and two other tours with AEG. Sometime after 2011, one of these extra tours was to be a final reunion with the Jackson 5, and that was for one reason only: Mother had said to him that she was nearing the age of 80 and before she left this earth, she wanted to see her sons tour together one last time. ‘I promised we’ll do that for you, Mother’ said Michael, and he was always a man of his word. He then planned on doing one more solo tour, -- his true final curtain. ‘After that I will be done – done!’ he said, looking towards an official musical retirement age of 55. Then he’d crack Hollywood with his movie ideas.
I started to read chap. 21 last night around 11:30 pm. After reading about Michael’s plan for 2009-2014 that I didn’t know, I couldn’t sleep until 3:00 am. I had a grief, thinking about his future that never was, about everything that might have achieved, but disappeared with him… I said, why? why did God take him in June 2009, not in 2014 or 2030 or even 2050?? I'm too sad, thinking this great loss for Michael himself, for his children, for us who love him so much, for our planet earth, for all children and the suffering people in this world…