He will likely be remembered as the most legendary performer of our time, and was in the process of putting together a massive comeback concert when his shocking death sent the world into mourning. Next week, [artist id="1102"]Michael Jackson[/artist]'s final performances will be unveiled in "This Is It," and if the four preview clips (three of them new) we've seen are any indication, the film will be a touching peek into the creative process of a true original.
To help promote the documentary, out October 28, Sony Pictures has leaked four clips to the media, each featuring the Gloved One planning the sold-out shows in London that he never lived to perform. To paraphrase one of his songs, when you take a look at the footage, it's hard to forget the way he made you feel — and that his music really turned you on.
"Human Nature" — Making comments like "something there," Michael choreographs his dance moves for a performance of "Human Nature," the fifth hit single off his 1983 Thriller album. As he points and does some of his signature footwork, the band kicks in behind him with the beloved tune.
"Human Nature Extended" — A longer version of the earlier clip, this one cuts Michael's footage with shots of his backing musicians, then extends into a shot of MJ performing in front of a lit stage, making it seem as though we're in the crowd watching the legendary performer in concert.
"The Way You Make Me Feel" — "I've gotta cue that; I've gotta cue that," Michael insists to the people helping him design the stage show. "That can't trigger on its own." The footage then cuts to shots of silhouetted backup dancers as "The Way You Make Me Feel" kicks in on the soundtrack. Wearing a hat and black armband, Michael watches a female backup dancer strut past, then begins singing out the love song to her. His exaggerated motions invoke the playful, quick-on-his-feet MJ we all remember from his '80s heyday.
"They Don't Care About Us" — "There's the man," you can hear a crewmember's voice saying as MJ walks onto a soundstage. "There's Michael." Looking over a storyboard, Michael says, "That's a cool move — we spread out at the end." We then see Michael teaching his backup crew some basic steps, as sound effects sneak in to beef up the action. The effects carry us into a cool, "Unplugged"-like version of "Bad" that is cut with footage of MJ and the dancers on various stages, banging out the routine. The number then flows into a rap-like take on "They Don't Care About Us," from MJ's HIStory album.
Don't miss "Michael Jackson's This Is It" Premiere Special, airing on MTV and VH1 on Tuesday, October 27 at 8:30 p.m. ET! "Michael Jackson's This Is It" opens in a limited engagement on October 27 and wide on October 28.
Check out everything we've got on "Michael Jackson's This Is It."