Who Is Jaafar Jackson? Michael Jackson’s Nephew to Play Icon in Biopic
Michael Jackson's nephew, Jafaar Jackson, is set to portray his legendary uncle in the upcoming Antoine Fuqua-directed biopic, Michael.
"I’m humbled and honored to bring my Uncle Michael’s story to life. To all the fans all over the world, I’ll see you soon," Jafaar wrote on Instagram Jan. 30 after his casting was announced.
Michael, which will explore the life and career of the King of Pop, will reportedly not shy away from the icon's controversies. The film is being produced by Graham King, who worked on 2018 Queen biopic Bohemian Rhapsody, along with support from Jackson's estate.
Below, find out more about Michael Jackson's nephew Jafaar Jackson and the Michael biopic.
Who Is Jaafar Jackson?
Jafaar Jackson, 26, is the son of Michael's older brother Jermaine Jackson, who was a member of the Jackson 5. His mother is Alejandra Genevieve Oaziaza, who was married to Jackson from 1995 to 2003.
Jafaar is also a singer. He released his debut single, "Got Me Singing," in 2019.
According to Deadline, Jackson has been singing and dancing since he was 12, and he has covered iconic artists such as Marvin Gaye and Sam Cooke.
Michael will be Jackson's first acting role.
Watch Jafaar Jackson's "Got Me Singing" Music Video:
Was There a Casting Call for Michael?
According to Variety, producer Graham King and his team embarked on a worldwide casting search for an actor who could handle the role of the King of Pop before landing on Jaafar Jackson.
"I met Jaafar over two years ago and was blown away by the way he organically personifies the spirit and personality of Michael. It was something so powerful that even after conducting a worldwide search, it was clear that he is the only person to take on this role," King shared.
In a statement to Variety, director Antoine Fuqua said Jafaar "has a natural ability to emulate Michael and such a great chemistry with the camera."
Does the Michael Jackson Biopic Have His Family's Support?
"Jaafar embodies my son. It’s so wonderful to see him carry on the Jackson legacy of entertainers and performers," Jackson family matriarch Katherine Jackson, mother of Michael, said of the casting in a statement.
In the comments section of Jafaar's Instagram post, his cousin TJ Jackson, who is the son of Tito Jackson, wrote, "I’m so proud of you Jaafar. Words can’t express… you got it…..You are truly the only one who can do it right."
TJ was named co-guardian of Michael's children Prince, Paris and Bigi in 2012.
The Jacksons also posted about the film on their official Instagram account, writing, "What better person to portray our brother Michael than our endlessly talented nephew Jaafar Jackson?!"
Most notably, Jackson's oldest son, Prince, posted a statement about the film via Instagram Jan. 30.
"Truthfully I couldn’t be happier and prouder for him, he’s been working his ass off and I know he’s going to do an amazing job. Just being himself, he embodies so much of my dad and I’m confident we are all going to do our best to show the world a part of my father they’ve never seen and that they deserve to see," Paris wrote.
"This project means so much to me for many reasons, I’m really happy that my family and I can go on this journey together," he concluded.