AceShowbiz - The Michael Jackson estate is nearing a mega deal for a 50/50 share of the late singer's catalog. The MJ estate is reportedly close to finalizing a deal worth nearly a billion dollars with Sony that will make the company a new co-owner of the late singer's music.
According to Variety which first published the report, the deal is in the $800 million-$900 million range. While details are unclear, sources say Sony and a possible financial partner are negotiating to acquire 50% of the estate's interests in MJ's publishing, recorded-music revenues, the "MJ: The Musical" Broadway show and the upcoming biopic "Michael", and possibly more assets.
A financial source reveals that Primary Wave Music already owns a stake in MJ's publishing catalog, although details are unclear. Meanwhile, TMZ adds that the estate would entertain a 50/50 split only if the estate maintains complete management and control over the late singer's music and other assets.
Should the deal be sealed, it would be the biggest deal to date in the still-booming music catalog market. Sony previously acquired Bruce Springsteen's catalog for a combined price around $600 million. Meanwhile, Justin Bieber recently sold his catalog for roughly $200 million. Even the combination of Drake and Nicki Minaj's recordings included in the Young Money catalog, originally owned by Lil Wayne, was sold to Universal Music Group for just $100 million.
The MJ catalog sale comes on the heels of a biopic about the King of Pop. The project is currently in development at Lionsgate with Antoine Fuqua attached as director. In late January, Michael's nephew Jaafar Jackson, the son of Jermaine Jackson, was cast in the lead role.
"Proud to announce @jaafarjackson as Michael - the motion picture event that explores the journey of the man who became the King of Pop," the filmmaker announced along with a picture of Jaafar wearing outfit similar to the one MJ sported in his "Billie Jean" era while dancing in front of mirrors.
The filmmaker also said in a statement, "It's incredibly exciting to watch Jaafar bring Michael to life. There was such a spiritual connection when I first met Jaafar, who has a natural ability to emulate Michael and such a great chemistry with the camera."
Michael's mother Katherine Jackson has given her blessing to her grandson playing her famous son. "Jaafar embodies my son. It's so wonderful to see him carry on the Jackson legacy of entertainers and performers," she shared.