Michael Jackson was a quintessentially American example of starting from the bottom and making it to the very top. Or at least, it seemed to be that simple for a while. His journey from a young musical phenom to a worldwide superstar had its complications, of course, as we watched the unbelievably talented man slowly transform into a polarizing figure, in and out of tabloids, lawsuits…and a whole lot of plastic surgery.
MJ was always at the forefront of celebrity gossip and at one point, was indisputably the biggest star in the world, selling more than 750 million albums. It was only six years ago today that we lost the legend, and to this day, June 25th is still just as sad as it was in 2009.
You all know who Michael Jackson is. He only invented the moonwalk (no big deal). But odds are, there are probably a few things about the complicated and legendary superstar that you still aren’t aware of.
To honor the King of Pop, Rock and Soul, we’ve compiled 20 interesting facts. Rest in peace, MJ. We hope you’re still moonwalking, wherever you are.
PHOTO CREDIT: Getty
20 Interesting Facts You Probably Didn't Know About Michael Jackson
1. MJ was a victim of physical abuse from his father as a child. In an interview with Oprah Winfrey, he shed tears and claimed that he was so terrified of his father that he would often vomit when he saw him.Source:Getty 1 of 20
2. His favorite animated character from childhood was Pinocchio.Source:Getty 2 of 20
3. When MJ listened to the songs from his days in The Jackson 5, he said he sounded like "Minnie Mouse."Source:Getty 3 of 20
4. His middle name was Joseph - Michael Joseph Jackson.Source:Getty 4 of 20
5. "Billie Jean" is allegedly based on a true story. MJ claims an obsessive fan tried to say he was the father of her child.Source:Getty 5 of 20
6. His first song to hit the top of the Billboard Hot 100 chart was "Ben" in 1972.Source:Getty 6 of 20
7. MJ was a huge Beatles fan. He paid $47 million for the publishing rights to the Beatles back catalogue in 1985 and sold a share of it to Sony in 1995 for $95 million.Source:Getty 7 of 20
8. Get this… The costumes for the "Thriller" video came from the Salvation Army.Source:Getty 8 of 20
9. Jackson invented and owns the patent for the special anti-gravity boots he wore that allowed him to lean forward extremely far in live performances of "Smooth Criminal."Source:Getty 9 of 20
10. MJ loved animals, and had several…strange pets. He had a python called Crusher, two llamas called Louis and Lola, and his most famous pet was Bubbles, the chimpanzee.Source:Getty 10 of 20
11. Sources say MJ "borrowed" the Moonwalk from street dancers he saw outside a hotel.Source:Getty 11 of 20
12. The original song title for "Thriller" was "Starlight."Source:Getty 12 of 20
13. Sources say MJ slept in an oxygen tent to live longer and for cosmetic purposes.Source:Getty 13 of 20
14. MJ was a proud owner of a 2,700-acre Neverland Ranch that has a theme park, a menagerie, and a movie theater.Source:Getty 14 of 20
15. "Home Alone" star Macaulay Culkin was one of MJ's closest friends, and is the godfather of two of Jackson's children.Source:Getty 15 of 20
16. MJ's estate signed a deal with Sony that gave them access to his unreleased recordings for $250 million.Source:Getty 16 of 20
17. MJ often wore a black armband to remind people of the suffering of children around the world.Source:Getty 17 of 20
18. The Los Angeles mansion he was renting just before he passed away once belonged to Sean Connery.Source:Getty 18 of 20
19. MJ was allegedly a pretty avid reader… He was once accused by a library of owing $1 million in overdue book fines.Source:Getty 19 of 20
20. Wikipedia, Twitter, and AOL's Instant Messenger all crashed at 3:15PM on the day MJ died: June 25, 2009.Source:Getty 20 of 20
#KingOfPop: 20 Facts You Probably Didn’t Know About Michael Jackson was originally published on globalgrind.com