Juliano Krue Valdi Takes Center Stage as Young Michael Jackson in Lionsgate's 'Michael' Biopic

2 Min Read
Juliano Krue Valdi Takes Center Stage as Young Michael Jackson in Lionsgate's 'Michael' Biopic
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Nine-year-old Juliano Krue Valdi has secured the coveted role of portraying young Michael Jackson in the upcoming film "Michael," directed by Antoine Fuqua for Lionsgate and UIP. Valdi will depict the early years of Michael Jackson, showcasing the rise to fame of the Jackson 5, the musical sensation responsible for timeless hits like "I Want You Back," "ABC," and "I'll Be There."

Graham King remarked on the striking similarities between young Michael and Juliano, saying, "When Michael was very young - eleven years old - he astounded the world, possessing the spirit and talent of an adult. He was truly an old soul. He and Juliano have that in common. Beyond being a phenomenal young talent, Juliano is deeply inspired by Michael and his music, and has managed to translate that inspiration into a presence and performance that captures the true magic of young Michael Jackson."

Director Antoine Fuqua expressed the challenges of casting the role of young Michael, highlighting the difficulty in finding a child actor with the skills to embody the essence of the greatest entertainer. 

"If anything, casting the role of the young Michael was more difficult than casting the adult role, because where do you find a child actor with the chops of the greatest entertainer who ever lived? In the end, that was our focus - talent - and we looked far and wide for an actor who could embody Michael's spirit through his voice, his charisma, and his dance skills. Juliano's undeniable, raw talent put him at the top of our list," said Fuqua.

Juliano Valdi, thrilled with the opportunity, expressed the importance of the role to him, citing Michael Jackson as the King of Pop and someone special in his heart. Valdi, who has been dancing to Michael's songs for five years, conveyed his love for the energy and positivity that Michael Jackson's music brings.

The film, set to roll cameras next week, features Jaafar Jackson, Michael Jackson's nephew, in the role of his famous uncle. "Michael" is scheduled for a global day and date theatrical release on April 18, 2025. The screenplay, penned by three-time Oscar nominee John Logan, aims to portray the complexities of Michael Jackson's life, exploring his ascent to global fame, triumphs, tragedies, and his humanity and creative genius.

Produced by Graham King and co-executors of the Michael Jackson estate, John Branca and John McClain, "Michael" is a collaboration with the singer's estate to deliver a comprehensive portrait of the iconic artist. Lionsgate and Universal Pictures International are handling domestic and international distribution, respectively.


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