Is This a Real Pic of Michael Jackson and Biggie Smalls Eating Together?


Claim:

An image shows rapper Biggie Smalls and singer Michael Jackson sitting together at a meal.

Rating:

False

In November 2022, some social media users shared an image allegedly showing famed singer Michael Jackson and rapper Biggie Smalls (aka Notorious B.I.G.) sharing a meal together. In the image, Biggie (real name: Christopher George Latore Wallace) is seated in the background, while Jackson is in the foreground, helping himself to food. Here’s a screenshot of the image being shared online:

This image (sadly) isn’t real. It is a composite of two separate photographs.

In the real photograph of Michael Jackson, he is sitting alone eating. A chair sits in the background, but it’s empty. The picture can be found on mjworld.net, a U.K.-based fan site. It was taken at Caribou Ranch, a recording studio in Colorado.

The image of Biggie can be found at BET.com. The image was flipped from left-to-right in the composite above. In the real picture, Biggie is seated next to his then-wife, singer Faith Evans.

Smalls died in 1997, while Jackson died in 2009. Their untimely deaths left behind enormous musical legacies but also waves of controversies.

Sources:

“MJ’s Colorado Recording Retreat Sells For Millions.” Michael Jackson World Network, 9 July 2014, https://www.mjworld.net/news/2014/07/09/mjs-colorado-recording-retreat-sells-for-millions/.

“When Couples Hit the Stage Together.” BET, https://www.bet.com/photo-gallery/dqomdb/when-couples-hit-the-stage-together/dl4it7. Accessed 23 Nov. 2022.

#Real #Pic #Michael #Jackson #Biggie #Smalls #Eating



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Sam Smith, Lauren Spencer-Smith, Michael Jackson and Carly Simon – WJJY 106.7


ABC Music News

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Sam Smith is bringing the holiday cheer with the festive, original love ballad “Night Before Christmas.” The track is the latest song to feature on Sam’s Christmas compilation EP The Holly and The Ivy, which they originally released in 2020.

Lauren Spencer-Smith is out with her holiday offering “Single On The 25th,” which she made for those who will feel lonely on Christmas. She sings about how much she hates being single at this time of year.

Michael Jackson’s Thriller 40 is out now. It’s comprised of a double CD set and bonus disc full of never-released tracks. Michael’s estate also told fans to circle their calendars for November 21, when they will release an animated lyric video for “Wanna Be Startin’ Somethin’.” This is all in celebration of Thriller‘s 40th anniversary.

Carly Simon released “We Have No Secrets,” off the forthcoming Live at Grand Central, which is a recording of her legendary surprise 1995 concert set to arrive January 27. The song also marks the 50th anniversary of her album No Secrets




 

Copyright © 2022, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.


#Sam #Smith #Lauren #SpencerSmith #Michael #Jackson #Carly #Simon #WJJY



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Former MICHAEL JACKSON Guitarist JENNIFER BATTEN Reflects On Trying To Audition For OZZY OSBOURNE - "I Know My Audio Got To The Right People, And I Didn't Even Get A Chance"

Former MICHAEL JACKSON Guitarist JENNIFER BATTEN Reflects On Trying To Audition For OZZY OSBOURNE – “I Know My Audio Got To The Right People, And I Didn’t Even Get A Chance”


Former MICHAEL JACKSON Guitarist JENNIFER BATTEN Reflects On Trying To Audition For OZZY OSBOURNE - "I Know My Audio Got To The Right People, And I Didn't Even Get A Chance"

Ultimate Guitar’s David Slavković recebtly got the chance to speak to guitarist Jennifer Batten – known for her work with Michael Jackson – about her career. An excerpt from the interview is available below.

UG: The landscape of the music industry today is a bit different back compared to when you were in Michael Jackson’s band. And, of course, it was a man’s game, and you also talked about some of the challenges that you faced back in the day. What was, if you could single out one biggest challenge in this regard, what would it be? The one that you faced as a female guitar player back in the day?

Jennifer Batten: “I’ve gotten comments over the years. A lot of guys will say you, ‘You play pretty good for a girl.’ Or, the best one, this guy said, ‘You play just like a boy.’ What does that even mean? Yeah, millions of male guitar players, some are great and some suck, so it has no meaning. But you kind of have to look at the energy that’s coming at you, and he meant it as a positive thing.

I remember, specifically, before the Jackson thing came up, I was trying to get an audition with Ozzy Osbourne. And they were of auditioning everybody in LA at the time. And I know my audio got to the right people, and I didn’t even get a chance. Looking back, it’s a super macho gig, and they probably wouldn’t even consider a female for that. Having said that, if it was the same thing today, I think it’d be a whole different story. You get somebody like Nili Brosh – you could slay in a gig like that. She has incredible chops, great tone, great attitude, everything. It’s a different world. It is a very different world now.”

Read more here. Go to this location for Batten’s current tour schedule. 


#MICHAEL #JACKSON #Guitarist #JENNIFER #BATTEN #Reflects #Audition #OZZY #OSBOURNE #Audio #People #Didnt #Chance



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Positive COVID tests cancel Michael Jackson tribute concert this weekend in Saginaw


SAGINAW, MI — A Michael Jackson tribute concert originally scheduled to take place this weekend at The Dow Event Center has been postponed until the spring because of illness.

Who’s Bad?, the longest-running Michael Jackson tribute band, was scheduled to perform at 8 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 5, at The Dow Event Center, 303 Johnson St. in downtown Saginaw.

“Due to positive COVID tests within the group, this show has been postponed and rescheduled to April 14, 2023,” Dow Event Center officials announced in an email. “We are truly sorry for any inconvenience this has caused for any of you! Who’s Bad will be back soon, but we need to ensure that everyone is healthy first and foremost.”

All tickets purchased for the Nov. 5 concert will be honored on the rescheduled date, and ticketholders may request refunds until Saturday, Dec. 3, according to event center officials.

For more information, visit www.doweventcenter.com.

Read more on MLive:

Take a look inside the Red Eye’s new Old Town Saginaw home

‘Book of Mormon,’ the Grinch and more coming soon to Midland arts center

Visit Bay City’s historic Center Avenue homes during the 2022 Holiday Parlour Tour

Historic mansion in Saginaw’s Cathedral District listed for $299,900

Saginaw’s Holidays in the Heart of the City returns in November

#Positive #COVID #tests #cancel #Michael #Jackson #tribute #concert #weekend #Saginaw



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Michael Jackson’s Son Denounces Harry Styles Being “New King Of Pop” – VIBE.com


Prince Jackson, the eldest of Michael Jackson’s three children, has broken his silence regarding Harry Styles’ attempt to claim the throne as the new King of Pop.

On Friday (Oct. 28), Prince, 25, sat with Good Morning Britain and, according to Metro UK, explained, “He’s got his own genre, and he’s definitely an amazing artist. But, the ‘King of Pop’ was a moniker that really my dad earned.”

He continued, “With so many other social factors that you have to take into consideration at that time, I do feel that my father is the King of Pop, will always be the King of Pop, and it’s not something that you can ever take away, because we’ve just evolved so much as a society that those same factors will never be the same. So, when you look at from where my father started to where he ended, versus where all these other people started to where they ended, it’s just night and day of a difference.”

Earlier this year, Taj Jackson—the “Remember The Time” crooner’s nephew and son of Tito Jackson—also spoke out against Styles being considered the “new King of Pop.”

“There is no new King of Pop,” he tweeted. “You don’t own the title @RollingStone, and you didn’t earn it, my uncle did. Decades of dedication and sacrifice. The title has been retired. No disrespect to @Harry_Styles, he’s mega talented. Give him his own unique title.”

The late global superstar‘s acclaimed Diamond-certified album, Thriller, turns 40 this November. The feat will be commemorated with a physical rerelease featuring new music. The making of the album will also be detailed in a forthcoming documentary, helmed by Nelson George. Additionally, an unnamed biopic, supported by Michael Jackson’s estate, is in the works. Both film projects do not have confirmed release dates.

Its titular video was the first music video to ever be inducted into the Library of Congress’ National Film Registry and set a precedent for visuals to follow. Revisit it below.


#Michael #Jacksons #Son #Denounces #Harry #Styles #King #Pop #VIBE.com



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Tim Burton wanted to direct a musical remake of House of Wax that would have starred Michael Jackson in the Vincent Price role.

Tim Burton wanted to direct a musical remake of House of Wax starring Michael Jackson


Tim Burton has a reputation for being a rather eccentric individual, so even he will admit that it’s a “strange phenomenon” that he has had so much success working within the Hollywood studio system. But while he has had some great successes, he has also had – like any filmmaker – projects that he just couldn’t get into production. One of the most famous of those lost projects is Superman Lives, which is covered in the video embedded above. A movie Burton was going to direct with Nicolas Cage as Superman. Speaking in a masterclass at the Lumière Festival, Burton revealed (as reported by Deadline) there’s another entry on his list of lost projects that sounds quite interesting: a musical remake of House of Wax that would have starred Michael Jackson!

Here’s the passage that discusses the lost House of Wax remake:

“I have worked for several months on things that got rejected,” he added. One project that go away he revealed was a musical version of the slasher movie House Of Wax with Michael Jackson. “They said ‘no’. Can you believe that?” he said with a laugh, adding that Jackson had been the only one truly on board.

This actually isn’t the first time Burton has mentioned his failed attempt to make House of Wax with Michael Jackson, as he named it as his favorite lost project in an interview while doing press for his 2012 film Frankenweenie. But it’s fascinating to hear about nonetheless.

Burton was probably trying to get his House of Wax made sometime before the release of the 2005 slasher film with that title. This would have been a remake of the 1953 classic starring Vincent Price, which was itself a remake of a 1933 classic called Mystery of the Wax Museum, starring Lionel Atwill and Fay Wray. The 1953 film has the following synopsis:

Wax sculptor Henry (Vincent Price) is horrified to learn that his business partner, Matthew (Roy Roberts), plans on torching their wax museum to collect on the insurance policy. Henry miraculously survives a fiery confrontation with Matthew and re-emerges some years hence with a museum of his own. But when the appearance of Henry’s new wax sculptures occurs at the same time that a number of corpses vanish from the city morgue, art student Sue Allen (Phyllis Kirk) begins suspecting wrongdoing.

During the masterclass, Burton also mourned the loss of the “independent spirit” that Hollywood had in the ’60s and ’70s, talked about his fondness for Johnny Depp (“He was a bit similar to me, kind of suburban, white trash, whatever – we connected on some kind of level.”), and what it was like to make Batman and Batman Returns.

It did feel very exciting to be at the beginning of all of it. It’s amazing how much it hasn’t really changed in a sense – the tortured superhero, weird costumes – but for me, at the time it was very exciting. It felt new. The thing that is funny about it now is, people go ‘What do you think of the new Batman?’ and I start laughing and crying because I go back to a time capsule, where pretty much every day the studios were saying, ‘It’s too dark, it’s too dark’. Now it looks like a lighthearted romp.”

Burton says it has “gotten a lot harder” to get movies made in the studio system, but he has seen some promising signs for the future. To read more of what he had to say, click over to Deadline.

Are you a fan of Tim Burton’s work, and do you wish he had been able to make a House of Wax musical with Michael Jackson? Share your thoughts on this by leaving a comment below.

House of Wax 1953

#Tim #Burton #wanted #direct #musical #remake #House #Wax #starring #Michael #Jackson



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“Didn’t Look Like He Was in Pain”: Bodybuilding Legend Lou Ferrigno Once Discussed ‘King of Pop’ Michael Jackson’s Diet and Workout Routine During His Final Days


Michael Jackson is still among the biggest pop stars ever. Jackson sold about one billion records around the world. However, the ‘King of Pop’ was also an exceptional dancer who invented iconic moves like the ‘moon walk’. To maintain his dancing chops, Jackson worked with a personal trainer and former Mr. Universe, Lou Ferrigno. A good friend of Micheal, Ferrigno, was training the pop icon for his comeback right before Jackson’s untimely death in 2009.

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While discussing the pop icon’s diet and training, Ferrigno revealed what he thought of the singer’s health.

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Ferrigno reveals how Michael Jackson ate and worked out

Lou Ferrigno became famous after becoming Mr. Universe and starring as the Incredible Hulk. However, what many don’t know is that Michael Jackson appointed Ferrigno as his personal trainer. In an interview with ABC news, Ferrigno stated, “I think he was a vegetarian. And he only ate once a day. But I just told him the proper supplements to take,” however, Ferrigno thought, “He (Michael Jackson) was dancing as good as anyone.”

Lou Ferrigno also said, “He (Michael Jackson) didn’t want to weight train. So he mostly wanted to deal with flexibility and conditioning,” and that, “He didn’t look like he was in pain”. The former Mr. Universe also said that while training for the tour, Michael focused more on cardio and core training.

According to the Incredible Hulk actor, Michael was in good shape and had a high energy level during his workouts. Lou also said that he is an expert and would have advised Michael if thought the King of Pop’s diet and workout schedule was having a negative effect.

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Jackson was 50 when he died. It was later reported that around the time of his death, Michael Jackson weighed only around 130 lbs. Considering he was well over 5’5” Ft tall, that’s quite a low body weight.

The King of Pop may have not been very healthy

Lou Ferrigno found nothing wrong with Jackson’s diet and performance, however, conflicting reports about his health have emerged. In 2013, a Harvard sleep researcher claimed that the pop singer suffered from a complete loss of sleep. It’s also a proven fact that Jackson routinely took the drug propofol to help him sleep at night.

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Watch this story: 6’5 Tall Beast Lou Ferrigno Towered Over 7-Time Mr. Olympia Arnold Schwarzenegger in These Iconic Images

The King of Pop died on 25 June, 2009 because of cardiac arrest. While working with Lou Ferrigno, Michael Jackson did not show drops in energy levels, even if he was eating once a day. However, after many conflicting reports and a court trial, there is still a sense of mystery surrounding Jackson’s death. What do you are the factors that contributed to Jackson’s death? Let us know in the comments.


#Didnt #Pain #Bodybuilding #Legend #Lou #Ferrigno #Discussed #King #Pop #Michael #Jacksons #Diet #Workout #Routine #Final #Days



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Michael Jackson Hurricane Ian TikToks are going viral


They’re singin’ in the rain — and holding on for dear life, just like the late King of Pop

As Hurricane Ian trounces Florida, triggering a death toll of 21 in the wake of wind speeds of 155 miles per hour, a gaggle of Gen Z goofs is finding “dark humor” in the horror. 

Rather than seeking higher ground as flood waters rise above rooftops, cyber comedians in the Sunshine State have been busy filming themselves braving the elements and lip-syncing the lyrics to Michael Jackson’s “Earth Song.” 

In a video for the 1995 ditty that raises awareness about environmental issues, Jackson, who died at age 50 in 2009, clings to trees as a violent windstorm rips through the dark skies. 

TikTokers are going viral with Hurricane Ian satire.
TikTokers are going viral with Hurricane Ian satires.
TikTok/@itsjordangeee

“#HurricaneIan on my 21st birthday,” TikToker Jordan Glenn penned in the caption of her “Earth Song” parody. 

Glenn’s video, with more than 2.9 million views and 778,000 likes, fetched a shower of glowing comments from online audiences, writing, “Naahhh…I really like this” and “Our generation plays all day.” Nearly all of the 25,000 comments featured a string of laughing emojis. 

Social media family @LuvTheSanders also received high marks for their storm satire.

Social media pranksters are making light of the devastating Hurricane Ian which is currently ripping through Florida and the Carolinas.
Social media pranksters are making light of Hurricane Ian, currently ripping through Florida and the Carolinas.

TikTokers are making parody videos and using Michael Jackson's "Earth Song" as the soundtrack to their jest.
TikTokers are making videos inspired by Michael Jackson and using his “Earth Song” as the soundtrack.

Cyber-famous family @LuveTheSanders shared a storm post with over 731k views from amused onlookers.
Cyber-famous family @LuvTheSanders shared a storm post, which has garnered over more than 731,000 views.

In a TikTok clip with more than 731,000 clicks, a teen lip-syncs to MJ’s hit tune while doing battle with the storm.

The post sees the youth clutching trees and tall plants, staggering around high grass and even laying in the middle of the street amid the cloudburst. 

“Floridians are so hilarious, even in the worst possible situations,” penned a commentator. 

“Gen Z needs to get it together. Hurricane… and [we’re] outside making music videos,” joked another. 

But not everyone found the tomfoolery funny

“Can you imagine prepping for a hurricane and your child is outside thinking [they’re] Michael Jackson?” a Twitter user spat. 

“I hate this generation,” barked another TikTok commenter. 

#Michael #Jackson #Hurricane #Ian #TikToks #viral



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The agent replied to a fishy email. Then Michael Jackson showed up

The Real Estate Agent Replied To A Fishy Email. Then Michael Jackson Showed Up


Join industry visionaries Pete Flint, Spencer Rascoff, Ryan Serhant and more at Inman Connect New York, Jan. 24-26. Punch your ticket to the future by joining the smartest people in real estate at this must-attend event. Register here.

No agent likes to waste time on a dud lead.

That’s why the office’s agents were skeptical — to say the least — when a fishy-looking email came into Las Vegas Sotheby’s International Realty’s general inbox in 2004.

The message came from a woman named Grace Rwaramba, who, she claimed, represented a potential client living in a castle in Ireland. The client, she said, was interested in one of the brokerage’s high-end rental listings, and she asked about its security features, including whether the home was guard gated versus privately gated and details about the home’s panic room.

“Everybody kind of treated it like one of those Nigerian prince emails,” Zar Zanganeh, now a broker and managing partner of The Agency Las Vegas, recalled to Inman. “It just looked like a scam and like it wasn’t serious. So nobody gave it much thought.”

But Zanganeh, who was in the midst of launching his career as a real estate agent at Sotheby’s was a ripe 23-years-old. In his own words, he was “the youngest, least successful person,” at the brokerage and had nothing to lose and everything to gain by taking a chance and seeing where the lead might go.

So, despite overhearing water cooler chatter and consensus opinion that “you’d have to be an idiot to respond to an email like this,” Zanganeh hit “reply.”

Little did the naive young agent know the lucrative connection and genuine friendship that would follow.

The IM chats begin

Photo by Pavlo Gonchar/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Zanganeh’s email correspondence with the still unidentified client evolved into what he likened to a pen pal relationship via AOL Instant Messenger over the course of several months. The two discussed real estate, but also anything else the client wanted to talk about — and those topics truly included “anything,” Zanganeh told Inman.

“We’re talking everything from houses to, ‘What are you watching tonight on TV?’ at like 11:30 at night, and I don’t even know what time it is in Ireland,” Zanganeh, now 39, told Inman. “And he’s like, ‘Well, what did you have for dinner tonight?’ and I’m saying, ‘Oh, you know, I didn’t really eat dinner, I just had a Twix bar’ and he goes, ‘Oh I love Twix, have you ever had the Twix candy with the ice cream in it?’ And just nonsense. Like 45 minutes of IM’ing back and forth on AOL of all things.”

It was now 2005, and, at the time, the friendship was in the spirit of the moment, when people were just beginning to use the internet as a means of social connection.

“It created some of kind of friendship like you would in the late ’90s and early 2000s, through Instant Messenger and AOL and chat rooms and things like that,” Zanganeh said. “It felt very much like that, and it was very innocent.”

After months of nurturing the relationship, the client — whose identity Zanganeh still didn’t know — told the agent he was ready to move forward with plans to rent the property. It was an eight-bedroom, nine-bathroom gated property at 2785 S. Monte Cristo Way that featured an outdoor pool and spa, private tennis court and indoor orchestra loft overlooking the grand ballroom. 

Zanganeh helped arrange a wire transfer so that the client could place a deposit on the luxury rental, and someone from the client’s team reached out with his arrival details into Las Vegas’ Harry Reid International Airport via a private airplane.

They gave Zanganeh the plane’s tail number so that he could meet them there, and that was Zanganeh’s second hint (after the whole Irish castle thing) that this client might not just be the average Joe.

He was also thoroughly confused because he had never dealt with a private plane before and had no idea what a tail number was, or why the client’s team wouldn’t just give him the airline and flight number.

During the final prep call with the clients’ team before Zanganeh was to meet him, his assistant asked Zanganeh if he knew the client’s identity. Trying to play it cool, Zanganeh said, “Yeah, of course, we’ve been talking for months.” But the client’s rep knew better and said, “Just so you understand, it’s Michael Jackson.”

“I remember thinking like, ‘What the Hell? That’s who I’ve been communicating with?’” Zanganeh told Inman.

Zanganeh pulled his car up to the plane, and Michael Jackson got in the front passenger seat, followed by a security guard who situated himself in the rear. Two SUVs trailed them to the listing, with Michael’s luggage in tow.

Where’s the chef?

The first Las Vegas home Zanganeh brokered for Jackson | Photo by Aeon Jones

After Zanganeh did a thorough home tour, and was about to leave Jackson to spend the first night in his new home, Jackson asked, “Aren’t you going to stick around for dinner? Where’s the chef?”

Zanganeh’s heart skipped a beat. No, he hadn’t arranged for a chef, nor did he realize this was something that Jackson might consider a typical Realtor service. He had equipped the home with a TV, bed and linens, as Jackson’s team had requested, but hiring a chef hadn’t occurred to him, nor did stocking the house with food.

So Zanganeh ended up driving the superstar to get takeout from KFC that evening, as well as showing him and his staff where the closest Whole Foods was located.

A friendship blossoms

Michael Jackson in Las Vegas in 2003 before his arrest | Photo by Keir Whitaker / Wikimedia Commons

For some agents, that may have been the end of the story, aside from some brief check-ins here and there until the next transaction.

But Zanganeh’s relationship with Jackson had only just begun.

Because of his need for privacy as a celebrity and as someone who had been embroiled in child abuse lawsuits for years, Jackson had all of his mail delivered to Zanganeh. So, the agent ended up going to Jackson’s house every day or two to hand off his packages and mail. Sometimes he would linger and chat or end up staying for dinner, and ultimately, their relationship developed to the point where Zanganeh would join Jackson for birthday parties, holiday gatherings and other intimate occasions.

Zanganeh also became a trusted advisor to Jackson in more ways than one, warning him when his staff told him that grocery bills ran way higher than they actually did (so they could pocket the extra cash), and sharing his honest opinion when lavish clothing or jewelry sent from admirers in the Middle East were too over-the-top for everyday wear.

Throughout the friendship, Zanganeh concealed his client’s identity, aiming to respect Jackson’s wish for discretion. After about two years, however, Jackson brought the topic up with Zanganeh himself.

“He was like, ‘You’ve always kept working — you’ve never mentioned to anybody that we work together,’” Zanganeh recalled to Inman. “And he said, ‘You’ve never leveraged that. Don’t you think it would be helpful for your business?’”

Zanganeh acknowledged that it would be lucrative to promote his association with an artist who won 13 Grammy Awards over the course of his career, and to date, has sold over 400 million records worldwide. Jackson obliged, mentioning “a friend” who was “just a young girl looking for a place” in Vegas.

Thinking she was probably one of Jackson’s nannies, Zanganeh said he’d appreciate the referral. The “young girl” was Britney Spears, and Zanganeh ended up brokering a property for the pop star while she was contracted to perform with Caesars Entertainment.

After that, the flood gates opened, and the high-net-worth and celebrity referrals flowed over the remainder of Jackson’s life. Over the course of their relationship, Zanganeh would broker three deals for the musician.

From Steve Wynn to Mariah Carey and more, Zanganeh developed valuable client relationships both directly and indirectly because of his attachment to Jackson.

Once word got around that Zanganeh was working with a high-profile roster of celebrities, the reputation helped him to create a rapport with the city’s casino bosses, who then connected him to celebrities who performed at their casinos — including the late musician Prince, who died in 2016.

Although Zanganeh never spent time with Jackson and Prince together in the same room, his dueling relationships with them sheds light on the well-publicized competition between the two musical icons.

“Those two guys had a lot of respect and admiration for each other, but they also had a lot of friendly competition between each other,” Zanganeh told Inman. “It was like they always wanted to know what the other one was up to and what [houses] the other one had seen … It [gave me] a little bit of insight as to how such amazing, famous, talented people were so competitive, because I deal with that a lot in my own business.”

The two mega stars would quiz Zanganeh on who was getting the bigger house or who was getting the better deal — all in good fun.

“But it’s interesting to see people that are that successful and that famous still care so much about that in their own personal lives,” Zanganeh added. “Even when it came down to looking at houses.”

Zanganeh credits Jackson with launching his real estate career and making him the successful agent he is today. Over 20 percent of Zanganeh’s business today is off-market and referral business, and he holds the record for most homes sold over $10 million, according to Greater Las Vegas MLS.

“Michael single-handedly changed my entire career,” Zanganeh told Inman. “He changed my life and made me one of the most successful Realtors in the entire state.”

Jackson’s controversy and tragic end

Michael Jackson at the Santa Maria Courthouse during a break in his child molestation trial May 23, 2005 in Santa Maria, California | Photo by Aaron Lambert-Pool/Getty Images

It’s impossible to talk about Michael Jackson without addressing the child molestation allegations and lawsuits that marred his career starting in the early ’90s.

In 1993, a lawsuit was filed against Jackson by the family of a 13-year-old boy befriended by Jackson, alleging the pop star repeatedly committed “sexual battery” against the child during their slumber parties.

The family’s story was published in an exposé by Vanity Fair. By 1994, the suit expanded to three boys claiming abuse, but prosecutors subsequently announced they would not file charges against Jackson because the primary victim did not want to testify.

By 2003, days after Jackson’s Neverland Ranch was raided by police (a property that Zanganeh never brokered for Jackson), he was arrested on child molestation charges. On Feb. 28, 2005, the criminal case went to trial, at which the victim, Gavin Arvizo, claimed that Jackson masturbated him, and gave him and his brother alcohol and showed them pornography. A former member of Jackson’s staff also said she saw Jackson take a shower with child dancer Wade Robson.

Several months later, on June 13, 2005, Jackson was acquitted of all criminal charges.

By the time Zanganeh met Jackson in-person, it was well after the trial had ended, the agent said. Since Zanganeh didn’t reveal his connection to Jackson publicly until years afterward, he said Jackson’s scandal had little impact on Zanganeh’s own business or reputation.

Zanganeh was, however, sought out by the media because of his connection to Jackson following the pop star’s June 2009 death of cardiac arrest in response to anesthetics administered by his doctor, Conrad Murray. In 2011, Murray was found guilty of involuntary manslaughter in connection with Jackson’s death.

Zanganeh’s immediate response to hearing about the singer’s death was that it was a brilliant hoax.

“I thought for sure it was a publicity stunt, and I thought it was brilliant,” Zanganeh said. “This is the best stuff I’ve ever heard of and he’s the king of these things.”

Zaganeh was acquainted with American filmmaker, touring manager and choreographer Kenny Ortega, who was directing what would have been Jackson’s upcoming UK tour, and had recently gained a lot of attention for directing the film “High School Musical.” Figuring Jackson’s death was a move Ortega helped cook up to ultimately create chatter around his upcoming tour, Zaganeh was not concerned.

But after witnessing days of non-stop news coverage about Jackson’s death, Zaganeh started to feel like something might be off.

“I’m going, ‘this sounds a little too serious to be just PR,’” Zaganeh told Inman. “So I start calling, and nobody’s answering their phones and there’s busy signals, and then I started getting a very sick feeling in my stomach that this could be a reality. And then I didn’t hear back from anyone for like four days.”

Zaganeh did start receiving a number of calls for a different reason, however.

“I didn’t really have much time to grieve,” he said. “I think I ended up with something like 100 phone calls, emails, FedEx’s, letters coming in, all these different requests, including big checks offering me to give them access to his home and do all these different things, which, I didn’t feel comfortable doing any of those things.”

There was one interview Zanganeh conceded to because he believed he’d be able to discuss Jackson’s legacy without navigating what he viewed as a smear campaign, having witnessed some media outlets solely focusing on the child molestation allegations without offering multiple perspectives. That interview was with CNN’s Anderson Cooper.

“CNN and Anderson Cooper said, ‘We don’t pay, we don’t do any of these things. But the story is getting out there, and there’s all this false information, according to you, out there now.’”

Cooper was willing to do an unedited interview from Zanganeh’s perspective that would share Jackson’s side of the story, and that was all he needed to hear.

“That was the one and only story that I did do, and I did it with permission and it came out well and respectful, and it was handled beautifully,” Zanganeh said.

Having known him at a personal level, Zanganeh said that he could never believe the allegations made against Jackson held any weight.

“I always just shut it down very quickly, because I’ve seen him with his own children,” Zanganeh told Inman. “I have no reason to believe any of that is true. I know how he was — by the thought of that — how visibly upset he would get when that would even come up. That was the reason why he had left the U.S. in the first place … because he felt so betrayed …”

2785 S Monte Cristo Way

The living room of 2785 S Monte Cristo Way | Photo by Aeon Jones

In 2010, Zanganeh sold the home he had rented to Jackson to Dong Xue and his wife, Jeanette Zhou, for $3.1 million.

Xue is a retired doctor and Zhou works in fiber-optic communications while succeeding as a movie producer. Both happened to be fans of Jackson. Knowing he had once rented the house sealed the deal for the couple, Zanganeh said.

In March 2022, Zanganeh helped the couple list the eight-bedroom home for $9.5 million, The Wall Street Journal reported. Spanning nearly 17,000 square feet and boasting a 10-foot wall around its perimeter, the home remains active on the market today, and includes some of the furniture once owned by Jackson.

When Jackson resided at the property, he rented it for $50,000 per month. Zanganeh also brokered two other properties for Jackson before the end of his life: 7000 Tomiyasu Lane and the “Thriller Villa” at 2710 Palomino Lane, both in Las Vegas.

Jackson’s death happened 13 years ago, but his memory remains fresh for Zanganeh because of how drastically he changed the course of his life.

“I truly felt blessed by having him as a friend,” Zanganeh said. “And there’s no doubt in my mind that he completely changed my life and my career.”

The luxury broker, who first became interested in real estate when he worked as an assistant in a brokerage for a few hours after class in high school, has come a long way in a relatively short time.

Born in France and having spent his childhood in Spain because of his mother’s linguistics career, Zanganeh and his family moved to California when he was 11. After graduating high school, he asked his mother permission to take a gap year before college to give real estate a shot full-time.

The deal was, that Zanganeh could opt out of college altogether if he could make $100,000 during his first year as a full-time agent. Within his first nine months, he had made a paltry $5,000 and things weren’t looking good. But by some stroke of luck, the leads he had planted during those first nine months finally started to bear fruit towards the end of the year, and he barely exceeded that $100,000 threshold.

If Zanganeh hadn’t crossed that threshold, who knows if he would have been in the right place at the right time to connect with MJ.

Whenever he does public speaking today, Zanganeh stresses to his audiences that you never know when extending even a minimal act of kindness — like responding to what seems like a crazy email — will pay off in the long run.

“Pay attention to things when people say, ‘Oh, you’re an idiot for responding to that,’” Zanganeh said. “It’s an extra 30 seconds in the day to send an email back or be polite to someone who people think might be crazy.”

Email Lillian Dickerson


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