We've known for months that Joseph Fiennes would be playing Michael Jackson in a non autobiographical series on the U.K. channel Sky Arts. In the series, the Michael Jackson character will be taking a road trip with Marlon Brando and Elizabeth Taylor in a plot that will also incorporate the 9/11 terrorist attacks. The new series Urban Myths has finally gotten some real footage and you can take a look at what Joseph Fiennes will look like playing the King of Pop. The end result is about as bizarre as the concept. Take a look.
In the upcoming series, Joseph Fiennes will play Michael Jackson just after 9/11. The myth goes that he, Liz Taylor and Marlon Brando were all trying to get out of New York after the terrorist attacks earlier this century. Per the story that will be shown on Urban Myths, they ended up renting a car and going on a bizarre road trip. Brian Cox and Stockard Channing are set to co-star in the episode as the other two famous actors.
Urban Myths will not just be tackling a bizarre road trip story. The eight-part series will also feature a myth about Adolf Hitler, played by Iwan Rheon, and his friend, played by Rupert Grint. Other stories will feature actors playing Bob Dylan, Timothy Leary and even... Samuel Beckett. If you'd like to take a deeper look at what all that will look like, you can check out the full trailer below.
There's been some pushback regarding Joseph Fiennes playing the role of Michael Jackson, as the actor and the musician are not the same race, but Fiennes has tackled the questions head-on, noting that the story is about a myth that was published by Vanity Fair a few years ago and as such is not a true-life story. It's also a short feature, and while he had to decide to take on the role of Michael Jackson, he did say previously that the story is less about MJ and more about being uber famous and what that feels like.
It's less about Michael; it's almost about the three of these amazing, iconic characters and what it's like to have that disconnect at that kind of echelon of fame. It's sweet and actually very poignant and moving, but I got to tell you, it's not a biopic, and it's not Michael in his younger days. It's Michael in his last days when, I have to say, he did look quite frankly rather differently than when we grew up with him in the '80s or earlier.
Not everyone is happy about the casting, but the fact that Michael Jackson and Adolf Hitler will be showing up in the same comedy series might just help Urban Myths to get some more eyeballs than it would have otherwise. It's certainly getting a lot of extra attention prior to its release, which will happen on January 19.
Find out what else is headed to TV with our midseason TV premiere schedule.