Hollywood’s biggest eccentric just keeps getting more and more bizarre, as Johnny Depp has been announced as producing an unauthorized stage musical about another famous weirdo, Michael Jackson. Entitled ‘For the Love of a Glove: An Unauthorized Musical Fable About the Life of Michael Jackson, as told by his Glove’, the production was written by Julien Nitzberg.
Nitzberg previously wrote the controversial ‘The Beastly Bombing or A Terrible Tale of Terrorists Tamed by the Tangles of True Love’ which won the LA Weekly Theater Award for Best Musical of the Year in 2006. That show portrayed Al Qaeda terrorists in the same lovable and rascally manner as Gilbert and Sullivan’s pirates in their famous ‘The Pirates of Penzance’, and ‘drew comparisons to Mel Brooks’ ‘Springtime for Hitler’ the musical-within-a-musical from ‘The Producers’.
Set to open on January 25 in Los Angeles, ‘For the Love of a Glove’ is described as a “look into the strange forces that shaped Michael and the scandals that bedeviled his reputation” as told by a talking, singing glove. The show will apparently be acted out by regular actors with puppets based on the Jackson 5, Donny Osmond, Emmanuel Lewis, Corey Feldman and Bubbles the Chimp. Nitzberg reportedly came up with the original idea for this show 17 years ago. (But… I guess he decided to wait until he was dead to put it on?)
“I’m known for writing a lot of biopics. A major TV network wanted me to write a [Jackson] movie … but the question came up [about] how to deal with the child-abuse allegations… I said, how’s this? Everything MJ has been accused of has actually been caused by his glove, which is actually an alien from outer space [and] feeds on virgin boy blood. They laughed and said, can you do the normal version?… It was morally kind of repugnant to me to do … I turned down a really big paycheck. [I thought] I’m going to go back to this … and do this as a musical, [but] we just couldn’t get the financing.”
Enter Depp. His company Infinitum Nihil had tapped Nitzberg to pen a biopic on ’60s novelty singer Tiny Tim (“Tip Toe Through the Tulips”). Even so, Nitzberg kept in touch with Infinitum Nihil, who agreed to back this production.
Michael Jackson was dogged by accusations of child molestation through much of his career. Jackson died in 2009, but those abuse charges resurfaced this year with the release of the HBO documentary ‘Leaving Neverland’.
The Jackson Estate is very litigious and publically attacks any project that they think damages his reputation and memory. A 2011 episode of the British series ‘Urban Myths’, which would have starred Caucasian Joseph Fiennes as MJ, was pulled. They also threatened HBO with legal action over ‘Leaving Neverland’. So just wait until they hear about this!
An authorized Michael Jackson jukebox musical, ‘MJ’, is headed to Broadway next year. Presumably, bloodsucking alien gloves and puppet Corey Feldman will not be featured.
Source: Page Six