Rami Malek tipped to play Michael Jackson in new film
Rami Malek is among the favourites to land a Golden Globe tonight and an Oscar next month for his portrayal of the Queen frontman.
His movie Bohemian Rhapsody has already become the highest earning music biopic in history, taking more than £565million so far.
And it has received such rave reviews that Jackson’s family are insisting Rami plays the Thriller star in a new film.
A draft of the movie has been penned, reportedly with the approval of Jackson’s estate.
It is being offered to the highest bidder among the major studios.
Now the family wants Rami to complete the picture by leading the cast.
A source close to Michael’s mother Katherine Jackson, now 88, said: “She has long dreamed of a movie being made that really captures her most famous son and was completely enthralled by Rami.
“Her sons Tito and Jermaine managed to get an early copy of Bohemian Rhapsody and they played it for Katherine in the screening room at her home.
“She didn’t care too much for the story of Freddie Mercury’s life, but she was completely charmed by Rami. She feels he has that same childlike quality Michael always possessed.”
The other former Jackson 5 members Marlon and Jackie agree that Rami, 37, who is the son of Egyptian immigrants to the US, could handle playing Michael.
The King of Pop’s singing sisters Janet, La Toya and Rebbie are also on board, according to the family friend, as are his children Michael Jr, 21, Paris, 20, and Prince Michael Jackson II, 16, also known as Blanket.
The pal added: “I’m surprised none of Michael’s own kids has raised any objection yet. They’re usually the first to complain if they think any project might even slightly tarnish their father’s legacy.”
A Hollywood expert said: “Whichever studio wins the rights to an authorised Michael Jackson biopic will be hoping the executors of his estate will plough in tens of millions, maybe more, as co-producers.
“This will mean a sizeable share of profits will eventually go back to the estate.
“It will also mean the film will almost certainly play down every negative aspect of Michael’s life, from his child molestation trial to near-bankruptcy.
“But that isn’t going to bother Michael’s fans around the world – any more than it bothered viewers of Bohemian Rhapsody that the film quickly glossed over Freddie Mercury’s agonising death from AIDS.”
Malek’s performance as Mercury has earned him a best actor nomination at tonight’s Golden Globes.
Bohemian Rhapsody is among the contenders for best motion picture.