Five Things to Know About the Michael Jackson Movie
He’s still got it. The upcoming movie Michael Jackson’s This Is It, due out a full month from now, has blown past several sellout benchmarks, outpacing Harry Potter and Twilight in sold-out shows, according to a rep for MovieTickets.com. It’s also walloping the Hannah Montana
concert movie, per Fandango. Each site reports hundreds upon hundreds
of sold-out shows—over 700 showings of the film are already sold out.
Pop Vox has the answers to five panicky questions you’re having right now:
When can I see it? Not until Oct. 28—which is what makes
these sell-outs so unprecedented. Most movies don’t sell out 500-plus
theaters until the last week before they’re released (if ever). On
MovieTickets, This Is It hit 100 sellouts on the first day it
went on sale (Monday), and throttled up to 500 by Wednesday. "The
ticketing trend shows no signs of abating," Rick Butler, Fandango’s
chief operating officer, said in an e-mail from the site.
How long is it out? Just for two weeks—a limited platform
that’s helping to account for some of the pre-sale mass hysteria, the
site analysts say. It’s also being marketed as the biggest music event
of the year. After initially slotting the "special, limited, two-week,
worldwide engagement" for an Oct. 30 opening—a conventional Friday
release—Sony moved the film to a Wednesday night release, something
typically reserved for huge blockbusters. Which, inarguably, This Is It is shaping up to be.
What the heck is this movie—a concert or a documentary?
It’s both. Parts of it are a 3D concert movie, showing clips from the
50-date tour that Jackson was set to start over the summer. And the
rest is a kind of eulogizing documentary, with footage culled from over
100 hours of film that AEG Live sold to Sony Pictures. (Those 100 hours
were filmed during concert rehearsals throughout the spring and early
Who’s directing it? Kenny Ortega, the same man who brought you the High School Musicals
and who was, at the time of Jackson’s death, overseeing his tour. "As
we began assembling the footage for the motion picture, we realized
we captured something extraordinary, unique and very special," he said in August. "It’s a very private, exclusive look into a creative genius’
Michael is big, but will he beat Miley? (LOL, Of course!) As her alter ego Hannah Montana, Miley Cyrus holds the record for best-performing concert movie. Her Best of Both Worlds 3D movie earned $31.1 million, with a per-theater average of over $45,000. And yet, to-date, This Is It is outpacing Best of Both Worlds in pre-sales quite significantly.
Brace for an upset (or would it be the expected outcome?).