Posted July 6, 2009 • 9:44 a.m.
Just 48 hours before his death, Michael Jackson was “in a high state of stress and emotional drama, fearing that he would never be able to complete the 50-concert run in London, and it would kill him.” That’s the inside word from one of the closest business friend’s of the late King of Pop who he turned to often when problems were at their darkest.
I am sworn to never release his identity. The night that the rehearsals were filmed and recorded at the Staples Center in L.A., Michael returned home “exhausted, highly strung, stressed and sweating profusely.”
Michael reportedly said: “We did it, but we can’t go on. I’ll never make all 50. It will kill me.”
Michael’s confidante told me that he had come up with a last-minute plan to meet everybody’s needs. He wanted AEG to stage the This Is It show as a one-night world spectacular -- the largest one-time pop music event in history. It would be produced live from London, and it would be available in movie theaters, arenas and concert halls around the world simultaneously with immediate CD and DVD release.
The concept was that Michael would still earn the money he desperately needed and AEG would make the same money in one night as they would from 50 shows.
Michael apparently believed it would work and everybody would be happy, but he was stressed beyond belief if AEG insisted on going with the original plan, according to his confidante. “He couldn’t sleep, he was exhausted, and he was more stressed than he’d ever been in his life,” I was told. “At the very moment he should have been able to get back on top of the world, he worried so much he wouldn’t be able to execute it, and disaster loomed. He thought this new plan was the best solution.”
But top business executives reportedly rejected what Michael proposed. His plan was nixed. He became even more stressed, and, according to my source, it was that stress and high-wired sleeplessness that drove him to seek relief in the illegally prescribed anesthesia that should have only been used in a hospital operating room.
This Is It tribute show with Las Vegas production
I can tell you on absolutely the best authority that a tentative offer was made to the Jackson family over the weekend for a tribute show on the Strip. Joe Jackson and other family members including Janet, but not LaToya, also are weighing their own tribute show here with a Beverly Hills producer. I’m told that negotiations will intensify this week after tomorrow’s memorial service and burial.
AEG hasn’t officially confirmed that there is sufficient video footage and multi-track recordings from the dress rehearsals to use for such a show. Click HERE for our original VDLX story with WireImage founder Kevin Mazur’s rehearsal photos.
But insiders have told me there is “sufficient -- more than enough.” In addition to Michael taping all of the This Is It rehearsals from start to finish for a “making-of” TV documentary, he also had all the tracks from two albums that he had been working on in the Palms recording studio for three months when he lived here almost secretly at George Maloof’s casino hotel.
It’s believed that everything that was recorded as a safety precaution, and that can be used in a future show, is under tight security at AEG offices in Staples Center.