With Judith Hill now wowing them on The Voice, it's a good time to check out her history as a back-up singer with none other than the late Michael Jackson. Hill is one of the golden voices featured in Morgan Neville's documentary, Twenty Feet From Stardom, which had great buzz at Sundance and will be released theatrically by Radius TWC on June 14.
If Hill goes all the way on the TV competition it could sweeten the box office for Neville's film. In the meantime, the trailer features Hill discusses being a part of Jackson's final This Is It tour and the shock of learning that the King of Pop had died.
Twenty Feet From Stardom also features such revered singers as Darlene Love, Merry Clayton, Lisa Fischer and Tata Vega.
Judith Hill Discusses The Shock Of Michael Jackson's Death
Hill's Killer Audition On The Voice:
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They're the one percent even in immortality. Elizabeth Taylor reigns as the biggest earner in Forbes Magazine's list of Top-Earning Celebrities, even out-ranking her BFF in life, Michael Jackson. But she may not stay atop the deceased heap for long since most of that bundle came from a record-breaking Christie's auction that cha-chinged $184 million, mostly from the star's fabled jewelry collection.
Tim Burton had brought up the idea of Frankenweenie long before he finally was given the go-ahead. Development for the stop motion animated film dates back to late 2005, but didn't finally come out until recently. He went on to direct Sweeney Todd, Alice in Wonderland and Dark Shadows before his latest time in the director's chair. But the hold-off with Frankenweenie begs a follow-up question: What other ideas did the Scissorhands filmmaker ever have that didn't make it to the big screen? Apparently the answer is Michael Jackson.
Spike Lee grew up a year apart from Michael Jackson, so like anyone of that generation, or those that followed, and really anyone in the world who had a heartbeat in the '60s, '70s, '80s, or '90s he was fixated on the chameleonic pop star for decades. A new 60-second trailer for Lee's music documentary Michael Jackson: Bad 25 reveals a mesmerizing wealth of behind-the-scenes footage from the making of the King of Pop's iconic 1987 album Bad so riveting that it's clear Lee's as much obsessed fan as curious documentarian.
Bad 25 is having its world premiere at the Venice Film Festival, which opened Wednesday, but the Spike Lee-directed documentary, which recalls the late pop-star's creative process leading up to his follow-up album from his seminal Thriller release. This year marks the 25th anniversary of MJ's 1987 mega-seller Bad. ABC will broadcast the feature on Thanksgiving in the U.S. after picking up television rights.
Back in January Spike Lee debuted his latest joint, the self-financed indie drama Red Hook Summer, to a divided reaction at Sundance — but as he tells Movieline, he had a feeling his controversial look at faith and the church in the projects of Red Hook, Brooklyn, would leave Park City without a distribution deal. This week, following a solid opening in the New York area, the film expands to Los Angeles and beyond via self-distribution specialists Variance Films: "What would be the alternative to this? Not having distribution. And that’s not a choice. That’s not even a consideration."
Say what you will about Michael Jackson. He was the self-anointed King of Pop, but legions of fans around the world were his willing subjects for decades, crossing generations. So there is at least a reasonable in-house audience just itching for more about the moon-walker and Spike Lee is just the man to deliver. Lee and Jackson were friends in life and the filmmaker, whose Red Hook Summer opens next month, is working on a documentary tied to the 25th anniversary of the release of Jackson's Bad album.
With his Sundance conversation-starter Red Hook Summer set for an August theatrical/VOD release, Spike Lee sat down with GQ and gave a rundown of which projects are happening for him, and which are not. Among the Spike Lee joints lost by the wayside due to funding struggles, etc.: His Jackie Robinson biopic, LA riots film, and Wesley Snipes-as-James Brown flick. Surprisingly, Lee admits he's still awaiting the green light on Oldboy — but in the meantime Lee's plotting to direct Mike Tyson on Broadway and has already interviewed the likes of Justin Bieber for a Michael Jackson doc celebrating the 25th anniversary of Bad, so there's that... [GQ]
Kate Winslet broke a PR commandment earlier this week while promoting the release of Titanic 3D: She dismissed the movie's Oscar-winning theme song, claiming that Celine Dion's overplayed ballad "My Heart Will Go On" makes her "feel like throwing up." Citing the inescapability of fans serenading her with the massive hit wherever she goes, Winslet's sentiments are understandable. Frankly, I heard that song enough times 15 years ago to never hear it again, no matter how riveting and powerful Dion's vocals are. To say that song never once gave you chills is probably a lie. But be that as it may, the song hasn't given anyone chills since post-Oscars April 1998, when we'd all had just about enough of it. All we have left for it now is just a reflexive groan of antipathy.
This is real: Paramount is in talks with Magical Elves to direct their Katy Perry 3-D concert documentary -- as in Magical Elves, the producing duo comprised of Dan Cutforth and Jane Lipsitz, who previously produced the Paramount smash Justin Bieber: Never Say Never in addition to creating reality TV "classics" like Project Runway and Top Chef. The film will follow the singer on and off-stage, with Footloose director Craig Brewer also onboard to executive produce. The question is, can Perry bring the star power and fan adulation that drove predecessors Never Say Never and Michael Jackson's This Is It to huge box office returns -- or will it take some fairy-esque magic to translate Perry's candy-colored pop persona into movie gold? [THR]
Hot on the heels of the announcement that a Michael Jackson biopic may be in the works comes a video interview, over at Next Movie, in which Community star/rapper Donald Glover does the moonwalk and names the King of Pop as his dream role. Coincidence? Who cares? Give the gig to Childish Gambino, already!
Do you ever have that recurring nightmare where midgets and German circus folk take commands from talking toilets and wear Hitler masks and cast spells to bring Michael Jackson back from the dead in zombie form? If you didn't before, you will now after watching this trailer for the insane-sounding German flick The Return of the Moonwalker. Happy holiday weekend!