Home Film & TV Michael: New Key Roles Casted

Michael: New Key Roles Casted

by Neil Bui

Several new key roles in the Michael Jackson biopic, Michael, have been cast in an announcement by Lionsgate and Universal Pictures International. This group of talent includes individuals who not only act but also have musical careers and will more than likely be leveraging those skills for parts of the film.

“I’m thrilled that we were able to bring together such a gifted group of actors for this film,” said producer Graham King. “What they bring to these key roles provides a rich backdrop for the movie, adding to the extraordinary ensemble.”

Larenz Tate will be playing Motown Records founder Berry Gordy, described as “the man who redefined American music by developing and giving a national platform to such acts as Smokey Robinson & the Miracles, Diana Ross & the Supremes, the Temptations, Marvin Gaye, Stevie Wonder, the Four Tops, Gladys Knight and the Pips, and the Jackson 5.” Tate currently stars in Power Book II: Ghost after starring for six seasons on Power.

Actress and musical artist Kat Graham (Black, White & Blue, Love in the Villa) will play Diana Ross, lead singer of the chart-topping Motown group The Supremes, who was one of the label’s most successful groups in the 60s before Diana went on a decades-long solo career in the 70s, along with acting roles.

Actress Jessica Sula (Split, Godless, “Skins”) will play Michael’s older sister La Toya, the fifth child and middle daughter of the Jackson family, who first gained recognition in the 70s on the family’s variety TV series “The Jacksons” and went on to launch a solo career releasing multiple albums in the 80s.

Recording artist and actress Liv Symone (Power Book III: Raising Kanan) will play Gladys Knight, who produced several #1 hits for Motown alongside her family (as the Pips) and her signature song, “Midnight Train to Georgia,” brought her worldwide popularity.

Kendrick Sampson will play 28-time Grammy Awards-winning songwriter, composer, and producer Quincy Jones, who first met Michael when he was 12 years old, and the two of them would go on to collaborate on three albums: “Off the Wall” (1979), “Thriller” (1982), and “Bad” (1987).

KeiLyn Durrel Jones (“How to Die Alone”, “The Other Two”) will play Bill Bray, someone originally hired by Joe Jackson in the 70s as security for the Jackson 5 and went on to work exclusively with Michael for almost three decades, becoming one of his most trusted friends.

Kevin Shinick (“Where In Time is Carmen Sandiego?”, “Robot Chicken”, “MAD”) will play Dick Clark, the host of “American Bandstand”, the American music-performance and dance television program where the Jackson 5 made a legendary early appearance in their rise to fame.

Jackson’s nephew Jaafar Jackson will be making his acting debut in the starring and titular role of the musical icon. Antoine Fuqua (Training Day, The Equalizer films) is directing the film from a script by three-time Oscar nominee John Logan. Michael’s eldest son, Prince, is working with the production on set alongside with the filmmakers on behalf of his siblings.

Michael is slated for worldwide release on April 18, 2025 and the film is currently in production.

Thanks for reading this article!

If you’d like to share your thoughts in reaction to what you just read, then feel free to leave a comment below or click here to submit your own opinion piece. The Dorkaholics Team is always on the look for new, additional voices to join us, share their own unique perspectives, and contribute to the diverse platform we are building in our corner of the internet and pop culture community.

Join the discussion

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.