The Michael Jackson estate is finally looking at a financial boon after a number of legal wins.
The court victories will open the door for the beginning of a Broadway show and the revival of Jackson’s Cirque du Soleil show, which has been halted for nearly 18 months due to the pandemic, according to the Miami Herald.
One legal fight stemmed from the estate’s appeal of a $700 million tax bill, which resulted in a significantly lowered bill in May. The judge apparently thought that the value of Jackson’s image and likeness had declined due to the sexual abuse allegations from around the time he died. Following HBO’s 2019 documentary Leaving Neverland, the two men who alleged abuse took their cases to court, with one getting thrown out in October and the second, in April.
“I was always optimistic,” John Branca, Jackson’s entertainment attorney and now co-executor of his estate, told The Associated Press. “Michael inspired the planet and his music still does. There was never any doubt about that.” With this news, Branca thinks that now he can work towards creating a trust for Jackson’s three adult children.
The singer’s Cirque du Soleil show, Michael Jackson: One is set to return to the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino in Las Vegas on Aug. 19, in time for Jackson’s birthday celebration on Aug. 29. The Broadway show, MJ: The Musical will soon follow.
“It’s not a chronological depiction of Michael’s life,” Branca said of the Broadway show. “It’s more impressionistic, inspired by Michael’s life and his music. It takes place as Michael is preparing for a tour and MTV wants to get an interview. Michael’s very press shy, and slowly but surely as they develop a relationship begins to talk about different parts of his life that then get enacted in the show.”
With Branca and co-executor John McClain’s help, the estate has amassed $2.5 billion in revenue over the last 11 years.