Michael Jackson’s hidden faith and his spiritual journey to Catholicism

A film tells Michael Jackson and his faith

Michael Jackson: a man of faith, of prayer, who read the Bible every day and did a lot of charity; a man of spiritual research who led him to Catholicism. A film by Liana Marabini “A Gift from God” tells all these unknown aspects of the “king of pop” and also wants to restore Jackson’s “good fame”, recalling that the artist was acquitted of all accusations that turned out to be false .

Here’s what the director and producer herself says about the film.

– How did the idea of a film about a little-known aspect of Michael Jackson come about, namely his faith?

It’s really hard to explain, it was an inspiration. In June last year I read that his “historical” accusers, despite the fact that the artist had been fully acquitted of all charges in 2005, had returned to the charge, with new accusations and complaints, now that he had been dead for years and that he couldn’t even defend himself anymore. Naturally, asking a lot of money from his heirs. It seemed so unfair to me that I began to delve into the history of Michael Jackson and I came across this aspect of his faith, which fascinated me. I discovered that Michael was completely different in normal life, the opposite of what we saw on stage. He was very shy and complex, kind, charitable and very believer. He thanked God for all his successes, prayed and read the Bible every day and did a lot of charity: he is the artist who donated more than any other to charitable works during his life: more than half a billion dollars.

– Michael Jackson was originally a Jehovah’s Witness, which was his mother’s faith. What was his spiritual journey that led him to Catholicism?

Jehovah’s Witnesses made him suffer a lot because they did not accept his global fame, which they considered to be in conflict with their precepts. They wrote him letters asking him to change profession. As a Jehovah’s Witness, wherever he was, Michael often went door-to-door, which is the Witnesses’ method of evangelism. Naturally, he disguised himself, so as not to be recognized. People often closed the door in his face. This, he states in an interview, served to cultivate humility.

– What fascinated the king of pop in the Catholic Church?

Once he left the Jehovah’s Witnesses organization in 1987, Michael began a spiritual search that led him to read the Torah, the Koran and study eastern philosophies. He finally came to the conclusion that God is the same for everyone and that only the way one saw Him differed.  Love at first sight for the Catholic Church came in 1988, when he was in the Eternal City for a concert. While visiting the city, he was attracted by the sound of Schubert’s Ave Maria that could be heard from the Church of Ponte Milvio and entered. There he had a conversation with the young curate and expressed much admiration for a religion that has such beautiful music. He also expressed the same admiration later, when he did everything to organize a concert in the Vatican, the proceeds of which would have financed the construction of a children’s hospital in Tirana, Albania. He greatly admired John Paul II and called him a “beacon of light and hope”. Unfortunately the Pope died and the concert did not take place, also because his legal troubles then began, even though he was the victim of false accusations.

– The last years of his life were marked by accusations of abuse of a minor, which proved to be unfounded. But the stigma of the abuser remains. Will your film be able to abolish this slanderous brand?

I really hope so. We all must make it our duty to fight injustice. Defamatory accusations that destroy a person’s reputation are serious sins. In the film I explained the great suffering that this man had to undergo. He, who dedicated his life to making humanity happy. The motivation was money. The accusers tried to obtain extra-judicial compensation and when Jackson refused, the trials began. However, the jury declared him innocent on 13 June 2005 of all charges. Despite this, the press and public opinion continued to vilify him.

– Who are the actors you chose for your film?

The lead actor, Joshua Consigli, was a real surprise for us. He has an extraordinary talent. We chose him from 12 candidates, it was his first film. He gave a masterful interpretation of this complex and multi-faceted character. So much so, we also offered him a role in our next film, “Tulipomania”, about the first financial crash in history. The actors were numerous, 43. I’ll just mention a few: Rupert Wynne-James, Kim Boulukos, Aaron McCarthy, Princess Maria Pia Ruspoli, Carin McDonald.

– The film was presented at the Cannes Film Festival. How was it received?

We are very satisfied with the reception from the public and the press. The film is already on sale, we distribute it on the Condor Pictures platform, here: https://www.condor-pictures.com/index.php/a-gift-from-god-the-film-2/

A portion of the proceeds from this film will go to fund someone else’s project depicting Michael Jackson’s love of books and culture. It can be a documentary, a book, a film etc. Projects must be sent for selection by email to our production company: [email protected]

Jackson had an impressive library and read all the time, everywhere he went he bought books and spent hours in bookstores. This too, like that of his deep faith, is an unknown aspect of his personality, which deserves to be shown.