Joseph Fiennes, Michael Jackson TV Show “Urban Myths” Canceled
Sky Arts, the British TV network, has canceled the controversial episode of its upcoming series, Urban Myths, featuring Joseph Fiennes as the late Michael Jackson.
The decision to pull the plug on the episode comes only one day after the singer’s daughter, Paris Jackson, lashed out on Twitter about the casting of white actor Fiennes as her father. In a string of tweets, she wrote, “It angers me to see how obviously intentional it was for them to be this insulting, not just towards my father, but my godmother Liz [Taylor] as well.” “Where is the respect? They worked through blood sweat and tears for ages to create such profound and remarkable legacies. Shameful portrayal,” she added.
Sky Arts wrote in a statement on Friday, “We have taken the decision not to broadcast ‘Elizabeth, Michael & Marlon,’ a 30 minute episode from the Sky Arts Urban Myths series. This decision was taken in light of the concerns expressed by Michael Jackson’s immediate family. We set out to take a light-hearted look at reportedly true events & never intended to cause any offense. Joseph Fiennes fully supports our decision.”
As Gossip Cop reported, controversy erupted after the release of the first trailer of “Urban Myths,” prompting a massive social media reaction. One fan wrote, “Outrageous pic of #JosephFiennes playing #MichaelJackson. WTAF.” And another expressed, “Somebody help me understand this #josephfiennes/Michael Jackson mess. Trying to…but I can’t. #urbanmyths.”
UPDATE: Paris Jackson tweeted her reaction to the decision on Friday afternoon, writing, “i’m surprised the family’s feelings were actually taken into consideration for once, we all really do appreciate it more than y’all know.” She further said in additional tweets, “i will defend him until my last breath,” and “the media will forever try new and different ways of making my father look like a joke, they will always harass his legacy. we rise above.”