Image Credit: Kevin Mazur/Lionsgate/Universal Pictures International
Talk about doing a double-take! The first photo of Jaafar Jackson as his late uncle Michael Jackson was released on February 13. The photo recreates a moment from the King of Pop’s legendary 1992-1993 Dangerous Tour. Similar to Michael, the 27-year-old has his hair pulled back and rocks a white shirt with red detailing and a V-neck top underneath.
The incredible picture was taken by renowned photographer Kevin Mazur. He is the first to photograph Jaafar in character as Michael. “When I arrived for my first day on the set of this movie, I was so excited – it was like the first time I went on tour to shoot Michael Jackson,” Kevin said in a statement.
Michael Jackson in 1992 vs. Jaafar Jackson in ‘Michael.’ (Pete Still/Redferns/Kevin Mazur/Lionsgate/Universal Pictures International)
He added, “When I walked onto the set, I felt like I’d gone back in time and I was walking into the stadium to shoot the tour. Seeing Jaafar perform, I thought, ‘Wow, it is Michael.’ The way he looks and acts, his mannerisms, everything – he’s Michael Jackson. For anyone who didn’t have the chance to see Michael perform live during his lifetime – this is how it was.”
Director Antoine Fuqua also released a statement about the upcoming biopic: “We have assembled an incredible team of artists for this project – hair & makeup, costumes, cinematography, choreography, lighting, everything – and some who knew and worked with Michael are reuniting for this film. But most importantly, it’s Jaafar who embodies Michael. It goes beyond the physical resemblance. It’s Michael’s spirit that comes through in a magical way. You have to experience it to believe it.”
Jaafar Jackson with La Toya Jackson. (Gabriel Olsen/Getty Images)
Jaafar, who is the son of Jermaine Jackson, will make his feature film debut in Michael. When the MJ casting news was announced in January 2023, Jaafar shared a heartfelt message on Instagram. “I’m humbled and honored to bring my Uncle Michael’s story to life. To all the fans all over the world, I’ll see you soon,” he wrote.
The movie also stars Colman Domingo as Joe Jackson, Nia Long as Katherine Jackson, and Miles Teller as John Branca. Michael will moonwalk into theaters on April 18, 2025.