Star Wars Shocker: Michael Jackson Wanted to Play Jar Jar Binks

24 Jul 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

‘Star Wars': Michael Jackson Wanted to Play Jar Jar Binks, Says Ahmed Best.

What a legacy that would have been! may be remembered today as the King of Pop, but at one point in time, he was vying to play the part of iconic Star Wars character Jar Jar Binks, it was recently revealed.Ahmed Best tells Vice that he once attended a Jackson concert in London with George Lucas and Natalie Portman – sometime after the three prequels were made – and they went backstage and met Jackson and Lisa Marie Presley. In a recent interview with Vice magazine, actor Ahmed Best (who did, in fact, end up playing the notoriously obnoxious character) revealed that Jackson originally wanted the role in 1999’s Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace. “That’s what [director] George [Lucas] told me,” Best, 41, said. “Me, Natalie Portman, and George’s kids — we were at Wembley arena at Michael Jackson’s concert. Later, they attended an afterparty. “I’m having a drink with George, and I said, ‘Why did you introduce me as Jar Jar?’ ” says Best. “He said, ‘Well, Michael wanted to do the part, but he wanted to do it in prosthetics and makeup like Thriller.’ ” Instead, Lucas wanted the goofy Gungan to be CGI, based off a real actor’s movements.

Still, Best has accepted the criticism of his character, and has come to terms with the public’s reception. “At the end of the day, it is the movie business, and if the character doesn’t work for the people who watch the movie then the character doesn’t work,” he told Vice. “I can’t take that personally.” Since portraying the floppy-eared Gungan, Best studied at the American Film Institute producer‘s program and has gone on to dabble in writing, directing and producing in addition to acting. Though he was revered for his vocal prowess, the pop singer was no stranger to the big screen, having played the Scarecrow in The Wiz, the 1978 adaptation of The Wizard of Oz, and Agent M in Men in Black II. “My guess is ultimately Michael Jackson would have been bigger than the movie, and I don’t think he wanted that,” Best added of Lucas’ decision not to cast Jackson. But Best didn’t take the abuse personally. “To be 100 percent honest, none us, as we were shooting this, had any idea that anything like this was going to happen,” he says of the reaction. Best also revealed that the original script for Star Wars: Attack of the Clones was given the tongue-in-cheek title Jar Jar’s Big Adventure: “That was the first script that we all got when we go to Sydney.

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