If he had lived to perform in his "This Is It" concert tour, the late King of Pop Michael Jackson would have made at least $1.1 billion to as much as $1.5 billion in earnings. This was what Arthur Erk, an accountant familiar with the pop superstar's earning potential, told jurors on Monday, July 15 in his testimony as an expert witness for Jackson's mother Katherine and three children who are suing concert promoter AEG Live for Jackson's wrongful death.
According to Erk, Jackson would have made such a windfall if he had lived long enough to complete his 37-month worldwide tour plus a 10-year Las Vegas show based on his music without him having to perform. The conservative estimates already take into consideration the earnings from endorsements, merchandise, and royalties.
"Michael Jackson was in a class by himself. He was known as the King of Pop. There's no one who comes close to him," said Erk, confident that the iconic entertainer could have easily beaten other artists that time for the year's highest grossing tour. Erk pointed out that should AEG choose to sell the "This Is It" concert tickets at a much higher price, it would all be "still sold out."
So intense was the demand for Michael Jackson that he would earn so much even with his openly extravagant spending taken into the equation. After the initial contract of 50 concerts in London, AEG had thought of following it up with a four-year tour.