Michael Jackson tribute preview: What to expect on the anniversary of his death
Friday, June 25th, the one-year anniversary of Michael Jackson's death, may as well be called International Michael Jackson Day. No matter where one turns tomorrow -- to the television, the Internet, down an unassuming block in their own neigborhood -- there is a good chance reminders of the Gloved One will await.
What can you expect to see, besides the very predictable image of at least one person wearing that red leather "Beat It" jacket or a few zombies recreating the "Thriller" dance?
Here's a quick list of some of the more notable items on the MJ tribute agenda.
Expect a pseudo-takeover of your broadcast and cable networks on Friday, starting in the morning.
The CBS "Early Show" is devoting its entire 8 a.m. hour to a King of Pop tribute, with performances by Christina Aguilera, L.L. Cool J and Marc Anthony.
NBC's "Dateline" has an exclusive interview with Katherine Jackson, Michael's mother, for its usual Friday night program. Not to be outdone, 20/20 devotes two hours to the "Thriller" man with "Michael Jackson: After Life."
MTV is airing a Michael Jackson Top 10 Video Countdown and "Michael Jackson's Influence on Music," but at a time when barely anyone watches TV: between the hours of 5 and 7:30 p.m. (Its Friday evening schedule has been reserved for far more important programming, like "The Hard Times of RJ Berger" and a screening of the 2005 Paris Hilton classic "House of Wax.")
Meanwhile, BET is airing "Michael Jackson History: King of Pop," during the prime time hours between 8 and 10 p.m., while VH-1 Classic will alternate its entire Friday schedule between the 1992 TV movie "The Jacksons: An American Dream" (starring Freddy "Boom Boom" Washington, aka Lawrence Hilton Jacobs, as Papa Joe and Angela Bassett as Katherine) and the All-Time Top 10 episode devoted to Jackson.
Thriller Flash Mob-O-Rama
Expect multiple performances of the "Thriller" dance to come from various corners of the globe as a tribute to the late pop icon. (These will eventually join the cavalcade of pre-existing "Thriller" dance videos currently terrorizing y'alls online neighborhoods on YouTube.) The Filipino prisoners who became famous for recreating the "Thriller" dance evidently plan to do it again. So will zombie wannabes at the San Diego Fair, Philadelphia's Rittenhouse Square (on Saturday) and in New York's Times Square. Dancing will be prohibited, however, at Forest Lawn Cemetery, where Jackson's grave site is located.
Other Big Events
Expect to see plenty of TV footage of mourners outside the aforementioned Forest Lawn. In the singer's hometown of Gary, Ind., a new Jackson memorial will be unveiled and, later in the evening, a candlelight ceremony will be held. Fans also are expected to gather at the Apollo Theater, which will post a special MJ message on its marquee.
Certainly this information merely scratches the surface of Michael Jackson tributes. Do you plan to do anything to commemorate Jackson's passing, or are you just hoping all this fanfare stops well before you've gotten enough (assuming you haven't already)?
| June 24, 2010; 1:41 PM ET
Categories: Celebrities, Michael Jackson
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