Joseph Fiennes to Play Michael Jackson in Zany 9/11 Road Trip Comedy, Oh My God
Today in news that sounds like a series of escalating dares: Joseph Fiennes is set to play Michael Jackson in an original dramedy film for British network Sky Arts, which will tell the story of how Jackson, Elizabeth Taylor and Marlon Brando allegedly piled into a car to escape New York following the 9/11 terrorist attack. Yes, as in that Michael Jackson.
The Guardian reports that Sky Arts is developing a dramedy based on the urban legend that gained some credence in a Vanity Fair article back in 2011, in which Taylor’s former personal assistant detailed the wacky road trip Jackson tried to take with the iconic actress and Marlon Brando, with the unlikely trio hopping in a car and heading for Ohio to get far away from the tragedy unfolding in New York.
The strange tale has already inspired by a short story by Zadie Smith, and will now serve as the basis for perhaps the strangest television film in recent memory — except for maybe that Lifetime movie in which Lindsay Lohan played Elizabeth Taylor; lesson: Elizabeth Taylor makes for really wacky TV movie fodder.
As The Guardian notes, the story may not be totally true, as another former assistant to the late Taylor says that the actress remained in New York and visited Ground Zero. For Fiennes’ part, the actor confirms his role and describes the movie as a “fun, lighthearted, tongue-in-cheek road trip of what celebrity of that kind is like,” adding, “But also it’s rather beautiful and poignant about their relationships.” No disrespect.
And in more sensible casting choices, Stockard Channing will play the role of Taylor, with Brian Cox as Brando.