“This Is It” promoters call Michael Jackson a “mess”
Michael Jackson was said to be an “emotionally paralyzed mess” who was “scared to death” leading up to his planned “This Is It” concerts back in 2009 — this according to newly obtained emails sent by the promoters of the said show.
The emails, which were obtained by the Los Angeles Times, are the focal point to various ongoing lawsuits about the failure of Michael Jackson’s “This Is It” tour. The emails are said to contain dire warnings.
“MJ is locked in his room drunk and despondent,” AEG promoter Randy Phillips wrote to his boss before a huge concert announcement that year. “He is an emotionally paralyzed mess riddled with self-loathing and doubt.”
In the midst of rehearsals in June, a production manager wrote, “He was a basket case. Doubt is pervasive.”
Show director Kenny Ortega later complained to Phillips that Michael Jackson was displaying “strong signs of paranoia, anxiety and obsessive-like behavior.”
“I think the very best thing we can do is get a top psychiatrist in to evaluate him ASAP,” Ortega said.
The emails also show AEG backed out at the idea of having a shrink talk with Michael Jackson. Instead, they relied on his doctor, Conrad Murray — who was later convicted of giving the “Heal The World” singer a fatal dose of the powerful anesthetic propofol to help him sleep.
The insurance company for the concert, Lloyd’s of London, repeatedly demanded a physical from Michael Jackson, which AEG never arranged. The company also demanded that Dr. Murray provide a five-year medical history.
“Authorization was denied,” Murray told AEG in an email sent from the bedroom where Jackson died of an overdose an hour later.
Now, Lloyd’s of London is trying to revoke the $17 million policy, saying AEG did not disclose information about Jackson’s ability to carry out the shows.
Jackson’s estate is also suing AEG, claiming it played a role in his death by pushing him too hard to perform, despite his fragile state.
The emails portray AEG as desperate to get Michael Jackson onto the stage.
“I screamed at him so loud the walls are shaking,” Phillips wrote after Michael Jackson declined to leave his London hotel room for the big announcement in March.
“He is scared to death.”
AEG could not be reached for comment on the matter, but its lawyer, Marvin Putnam told the Los Angeles Times the emails that were leaked have been taken out of context and displayed an exaggerated version of the company’s concerns leading up to the King of Pop’s death on June 25, 2009.
“Michael Jackson was an adult,” Putnam said. “It is supercilious to say he was unable to take care of his own affairs.”