Diane L. Cohen/Getty ImagesHours after Michael Jackson‘s daughter, Paris, said that seeing white British actor Joseph Fiennes portraying her late father in the U.K. TV show Urban Myths made her “want to vomit,” the Sky Arts network has pulled the episode.
Urban Myths is a new comedy series that Sky Arts describes as dramatizations of “true…ish” pop culture stories. One episode was to feature Michael Jackson, Elizabeth Taylor and Marlon Brando fleeing New York City after the September 11, 2001, terror attacks.
A trailer, which has now been removed, premiered earlier this week showing Fiennes as Jackson, wearing what appears to be a prosthetic nose.
Sky Arts issued an official statement this morning explaining its decision to pull the episode.
“We have taken the decision not to broadcast ‘Elizabeth, Michael & Marlon,’ a [30-minute] episode from the Sky Arts Urban Myths series,” reads the message. “This decision was taken in light of the concerns expressed by Michael Jackson’s immediate family. We set out to take a light-hearted look at reportedly true events & never intended to cause any offense. Joseph Fiennes fully supports our decision.”
Reacting to the trailer, Paris Jackson wrote Wednesday on Twitter, “i’m so incredibly offended by it, as i’m sure plenty of people are as well, and it honestly makes me want to vomit.”
MJ’s nephew Taj Jackson also spoke out about the portrayal, tweeting, “Unfortunately this is what my family has to deal with. No words could express the blatant disrespect.”
Urban Myths also will include dramatizations of alleged incidents involving Bob Dylan, Alice Cooper and The Sex Pistols, among other celebrities. The series premieres January 19 with a show focusing on the time Dylan supposedly went to pay an impromptu visit to Eurythmics guitarist Dave Stewart, but wound up at the wrong house.
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