Michael Jackson feared 50 shows
Jul 7, 2009, 12:00 GMT
The late pop legend - who died from a suspected cardiac arrest on June 25, aged 50 - was reportedly so exhausted and stressed following his final \'This Is It\' concert rehearsal, he was convinced he would die from the "emotional drama" of his London residency. EPA/JOSHUA GATES WEISBERG
Michael Jackson thought his 50 London shows would "kill him".
The late pop legend - who died from a suspected cardiac arrest on June 25, aged 50 - was reportedly so exhausted and stressed following his final 'This Is It' concert rehearsal, he was convinced he would die from the "emotional drama" of his London residency.
British celebrity writer Robin Leach claims Jackson confided in a close friend - whose identity Leach has "sworn" to keep secret - his fear he would not survive the record-breaking concerts.
Leach wrote on his website VegasDeluxe.com: "Just 48 hours before his death, Michael Jackson was 'in a high state of stress and emotional drama, fearing that he would never be able to complete the 50-concert run in London, and it would kill him.' That's the inside word from one of the closest business friend's of the late 'King of Pop' who he turned to often when problems were at their darkest.
"The night that the rehearsals were filmed and recorded at the Staples Center in Los Angeles., Michael returned home 'exhausted, highly strung, stressed and sweating profusely.'
"Michael reportedly said, 'We did it, but we can't go on. I'll never make all 50. It will kill me."
Three hours of video footage from the star's final dress rehearsal - which took place the night before his death - showed a very thin Jackson performing on stage with his backing dancers.
Instead of the grueling concert run, the 'Smooth Criminal' singer wanted to perform a "one-night world spectacular".
Leach said: "He wanted AEG to stage the 'This Is It' show as a one-night world spectacular - the largest one-time pop music event in history. It would be produced live from London, and it would be available in movie theaters, arenas and concert halls around the world simultaneously with immediate CD and DVD release."
Jackson hoped the one-off extravaganza would be a stress-free way of making money.
Leach continued: "Michael apparently believed it would work and everybody would be happy, but he was stressed beyond belief if AEG insisted on going with the original plan, according to his confidante. 'He couldn't sleep, he was exhausted, and he was more stressed than he'd ever been in his life,' I was told. At the very moment he should have been able to get back on top of the world, he worried so much he wouldn't be able to execute it, and disaster loomed. He thought this new plan was the best solution."
Meanwhile, Brooke Shields says her "instant" friendship with the 'Bad' singer flourished because of the lack of sexual chemistry between the two.
The actress, who first met Jackson when she was 13 and was rumoured to be dating him in the 80s, insists the pop star - who stood trial for child molestation but was acquitted of all charges - was naive about sex.
Brooke said: "Nothing was jaded about him. I was the most celebrated virgin ever then, when women wanted to throw themselves at Jackson and feel like they were going to teach him.
"He was like a little kid who talked about the bases - what first base was, what second base was. It sounded very odd to the outside, I can imagine, but to the inside, to someone who's never really left his bubble, you can understand how he would be curious."