Lee Produced Documentary Paying Tribute to Jackson
Spike Lee has produced a new documentary titled Bad 25, which he calls a love letter to the late Michael Jackson. The documentary debuted in Venice on Friday, the 25th anniversary of the Bad album’s debut.
Epic and Sony records commissioned Lee to produce the documentary for the album’s anniversary. Lee said that Bad was overlooked because it was an album that immediately followed Thriller, which is the all time bestselling album. Also, Bad, came at a time when Jackson started to flex his creative muscles. In the album, Jackson wrote nine of 11 songs.
Jackson, viewers learn, also never liked the term music videos. He called them short films. The short film from Bad, as Jackson called it, was shot in a Brooklyn subway station and in Harlem and marked the film debut of Wesley Snipes. It was designed to give street credibility to Jackson.
Lee said the project interested him because it focused on Jackson’s music and not on the media frenzy that had always surrounded him or the misconceptions and ill perceived eccentricities. Lee wanted to focus on the genius, his music and forget the rest.
The documentary by Jackson strongly argues for Jackson’s genius by highlighting achievements he made as a songwriter, singer, producer, dancer, performer and trendsetter for fashion. It also documents his hard work and attention for detail. A voice coach said that Jackson had a range of over 3 ½ octaves.
The final image in the documentary was taken from Jackson’s 1998 Wembley Stadium concert in London on his Bad Tour. He finishes Man in the Mirror and throws back his arms in a final flourish.