Sometimes, when life hands you a horrific piece of news, there isn’t much more you can do aside from shaking your head in baffled dismay.
Today, a trailer was released for the upcoming TV movie Urban Myths, which will, as promised, detail surrealist stories about some of the most famous figures in history (and the rumors surrounding them which may or may not be true). Last year, the project made waves when it was announced that white actor Joseph Fiennes would be playing the role of black musician Michael Jackson — a casting decision which understandably angered and offended a great deal of people.
With the release of the new trailer, however, the internet is experience a whole new resurgence of fury (and confusion) over the first glimpses of Fiennes in his full MJ hair and makeup.
In case you needed reminding, Fiennes is the brother or Ralph Fiennes (you know, Voldemort), and is most well-known in the U.S. for his role of Shakespeare in the movie Shakespeare in Love (i.e., the movie no one can believe won Best Picture). This is how he normally looks:
In the new trailer, however, Fiennes is virtually unrecognizable.
The Urban Myths MJ appears to be a heavy-handed caricature of King of Pop, coated in thick makeup, with a nostril-less prosthetic nose. (Perhaps Fiennes is taking a cue from his brother on playing noseless, child-obsessed icons.)
This rather insulting and highly unflattering recreation of MJ is not for anyone with a weak stomach. To put it simply: it is the stuff of nightmares, and you probably shouldn’t look at these images for too long, lest you spontaneously combust into flames.
Not surprisingly, Twitter has zero patience for this laughably horrific rendition of Michael Jackson.
I have no idea which producers or executives gave this casting choice/makeup look the go-ahead, but their vision certainly seems to be a divisive one.
Urban Myths is set to premiere this year in multiple installations, and it is currently unclear when the Michael Jackson-focused episode will air. It’s uncertain whether or not viewership will be enthusiastic, but I personally have a feeling that audiences will be unable to look away from this car wreck of a film project, whether they like it or not.
But, please. Let us not let this horrific injustice overshadow the other important news of the day.