Colman Domingo Set To Play Joe Jackson In Upcoming ‘Michael’ Biopic

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Colman Domingo Set To Play Joe Jackson In Upcoming 'Michael' Biopic


Variety has exclusively reported that Colman Domingo, coming off the heels of his inaugural Oscar nomination, has landed a role in the highly anticipated Antoine Fuqua-directed biopic, Michael, portraying the character of Joe Jackson, the father of the legendary Michael Jackson.

The casting news follows the earlier announcement that Jaafar, Michael Jackson’s real-life nephew, will step into the shoes of the King of Pop, while 9-year-old Juliano Krue Valdi takes on the role of the iconic singer during his formative years. It’s also on the heels of Domingo’s multiple NAACP Image Award nominations.

Colman Domingo Set To Play Joe Jackson In ‘Michael’ Biopic
SANTA MONICA, CALIFORNIA – JANUARY 14: Colman Domingo attends the 29th Annual Critics Choice Awards at Barker Hangar on January 14, 2024 in Santa Monica, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images for Critics Choice Association)

Domingo shared his excitement about the project during an upcoming episode of Variety‘s Awards Circuit Podcast, stating, “It’s exciting to do it with Jaafar. Jermaine Jackson’s son is playing Michael, and he is breathtaking, and I think Graham King, the producer, has assembled an incredible cast.”

In a statement provided exclusively to Variety, Domingo expressed his enthusiasm for being part of a film that delves into the complexity of Michael Jackson and his profound impact on music and culture worldwide. He also acknowledged the richness of his character, Joe Jackson, stating, “Not only am I fortunate to have a rich, complex and flawed character to portray in Joe Jackson, but I also have a front-row seat for Jaafar’s incredible transformation.”

The casting of Domingo, known for his compelling portrayal of civil rights leader Bayard Rustin in Rustin, as well as Mister in The Color Purple adds an intriguing layer to the biopic, as Joe Jackson is a complex figure in Michael Jackson’s legacy, marked by allegations and stories of abuse during the pop singer’s childhood.

Graham King, the producer of Michael, expressed his excitement about having Domingo on board, stating, “Few actors present themselves with Colman’s screen presence and force of will. We’re so fortunate to have an actor with his undeniable talent portraying Joe Jackson on screen.”

Fuqua, the director, also praised Domingo’s range and ability, saying, “Colman has such incredible range – he puts in the work to deeply inhabit his characters and understand their true essence and motivation.”

Production for the film commenced on January 22, as shared by Jaafar on Instagram, who provided a behind-the-scenes glimpse of himself in costume as the pop icon.

Domingo’s busy 2024 schedule also includes executive producing the horror movie It’s What’s Inside and appearing in feature films such as Ethan Coen’s Drive-Away Dolls and Greg Kewdar’s Sing Sing, which he also produced. Not to mention the handful of awards and nominations the actor has already picked up, including a Primetime Emmy Award and nominations for two Tony Awards, an Academy Award, a BAFTA Award, and a Golden Globe.

The Michael biopic is produced by Graham King, and scheduled to make its debut on April 18, 2025.

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