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Eyebrows raised last year when Joseph Fiennes was cast as King of Pop
An unrecognisable Joseph Fiennes has EVERYONE talking following the first look at his controversial portrayal of Michael Jackson in a new comedy.
The first trailer for the hyped Urban Myths: A Brand New Collection of Comedies has just dropped and it’s Fiennes’ rather creepy turn that’s stolen all the headlines.
Fiennes stars as Jacko in a tale about his alleged roadtrip across America with Elizabeth Taylor and Marlon Brando after 9/11.
Joseph stars as Michael Jackson in the comedy one-off from Sky Arts (Photo: Sky Arts)
The series details an alleged road trip that MJ took with Elizabeth Taylor and Marlon Brando across America (Photo: Sky Arts)
Stockard Channing plays Elizabeth Taylor, seen here driving while Michael sits in the passenger seat (Photo: Sky Arts)
Michael Jackson comedy sparks controversy after casting Joseph Fiennes to play the King of Pop
But people have taken to admit the trailer’s left them “terrified.”
One declared: “Ohh hell nooo! Joseph Fiennes as Michael Jackson is terrifying, they should have just casted one of them impersonators lurking the streets.
Another said: “Seeing Joseph Fiennes made up as Michael Jackson is weirdly creepy.
A third tweeted: “My eyes are forever damaged why is this happening?”
And a fourth person wrote: “I hope people stop sharing that Joseph fiennes picture as Michael Jackson. It's really scary and disturbing.”
A further tweet said: "Casting Joseph Fiennes to portray MichaelJackson is simply, utterly, unequivocally, and completely wrong. Forever. It hurts my heart."
Others, however, said they loved the trailer and couldn't wait to see the full comedy, which features a collection of myths about famous faces and leaders.
The one-off special - being produced by Sky Arts - will focus on an alleged road trip where Michael was joined by Elizabeth Taylor (played by Stockard Channing) and Marlon Brando (played by Brian Cox).
When announced last year, the casting of Joseph riled people up, with many questioning the decision to use a white actor.
While Michael was born African American, his appearance changed drastically during his career because of vitiligo , as well as his dependence on cosmetic surgery.
Joseph stars as MJ in the comedy (Photo: Getty)
Michael's image changed during his lifetime (Photo: Getty)
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Still, many people stormed social media at the time to criticise those in charge for casting Joseph in the role.
One person tweeted: "Even getting white actors to play black people now #outrageous #OscarsSoWhite."
Another wrote: "i love joseph fiennes but wtf were they thinking casting him as michael jackson?"
A third added: "Appalled by the Joseph Fiennes casting. Somebody so hideously rich has the freedom to choose what roles they say yes to. He saw no issue."
Joseph Fiennes (pic: Rex)
Joseph has said the role was a challenge
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In a statement the makers Sky Arts defended the film.
A statement said: "Elizabeth, Michael & Marlon is a Sky Arts comedy which takes a light hearted look at a reportedly true event; Joseph Fiennes is cast as Michael Jackson.
"It is part of a series of comedies about unlikely stories from arts and cultural history.
"Sky Arts puts the integrity of the creative vision at the heart of all its original commissions and we believe in giving producers the creative freedom to cast roles as they wish, within the diversity framework which we have set."
Michael Jackson re-enters the courtroom during a break at the Santa Barbara County courthouse April 27, 2005
Michael passed away in 2009 (Photo: Wireimage)
lizabeth Taylor and Michael Jackson
Michael with close friend Elizabeth, who passed away in 2011 (Photo: Getty)
Fiennes said at the time that he considers the role a 'challenge' and was still looking forward to being involved.
He said: "[Jackson] definitely had an issue - a pigmentation issue - and that's something I do believe."
He added: "He was probably closer to my colour than his original colour."
"It's a light comedy look. It's not in any way malicious. It's actually endearing."
The show was written by Neil Forsyth, who previously wrote Delete This At Your Peril, a series of email exchanges between spammers and con artists.
It's produced by a production company set up by actor Ralf Little, who starred in The Royle Family and Two Pints of Lager and a Packet of Crisps.
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Michael Jackson Joseph Fiennes Marlon Brando Elizabeth Taylor First look Joseph Fiennes controversial Michael Jackson role
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