So not only did 17-year-old Brett Nichols win his high school talent contest for his spot-on Michael Jackson dance moves, become a viral sensation and get an official nod from MJ’s estate — he also, apparently, brought peace to his school.
When MTV News asked Nichols — before school — if the viral video has made a difference when it comes to his high school career, he said: “Oh, totally. There are guys who maybe a week ago would never even talk to me [talking to me now]. There’s generally a lot of positivity.”
“The whole school doesn’t seem to be in as much small chaos as it used to be,” he added. “It’s not a crazy school, but every school has its rough moments and there haven’t been those lately.”
Take that, Dalai Lama.
Sure, this newfound peace might have something to do with the fact that the school year ends come Friday, but I’m guessing Nichols’ fancy moves and the fame they have brought to California’s Pitman High have made a major impact on the school’s denizens.
The video, which hit the Web last week and has since racked up more than 14-million views, is about 13 years in the making.
Nichols was first introduced to Michael Jackson’s moves in 2001 after seeing the “Michael Jackson: 30th Anniversary Special” at age five. A few years later, he started practicing Jackson’s dance steps — sometimes for three hours at a time. He’s entirely self-taught.
“I thought it was the coolest thing I had ever seen from anybody,” he said of MJ’s undulations. “He sort of seemed like a good role model.”
At age 17, he finally bestowed those moves unto the world — and I do mean world. Nichols said that he’s huge in Japan and may be traveling there.
And when he got the biggest compliment of all — a note from MJ’s estate and an invite to attend a performance of “Michael Jackson ONE” in Las Vegas — the teen was ecstatic.
“I did a backflip or two. I’m a diver, so…” he said. “It felt like something that I would see on TV. Out here, in the city, people only read about it — or see it on TV. It’s pretty incredible.”
Although more dance videos could be on the horizon — particularly to a jam by his other favorite act, Daft Punk — Nichols has his eyes trained on the silver screen.
“I want to be an actor or a filmmaker — that’s my real goal in life,” he said, citing the likes of George Lucas and Tim Burton as heroes.
Well, judging by the Halloween video algebra teacher/video arts teacher/track and field coach Thad Moren sent us — see the screenshot below — the boy is already halfway there.
That’s one mean Edward Scissorhands, kid.