Will the greatest music video of all time make for one of the greatest movies of all time? We may soon find out. According to Deadline, "This Is It" and "High School Musical" director Kenny Ortega is looking to direct a film based on Michael Jackson's famous music video "Thriller."
Several studios including Fox 2000, Mandate/Lionsgate and Summit Entertainment are looking to pick up the project, which is being budgeted at around $50 million, but further negotiations are waiting on a deal to be completed with Jackson's estate.
The script will be written by "The Hangover"'s Jeremy Garelick (interesting choice), and is said to follow the basic folklore of the music video "involving Vincent Price and the town he grew up in." It's also unclear whether the film will be a musical, though Ortega's involvement would seem to suggest that this is indeed the case.
In addition, Ortega technically has horror roots (if you consider "Hocus Pocus" horror, which is iffy), and as long as his pitch is right can probably convince John Landis to come on board and help out with the project. The bigger question is what exactly the "song's folklore" entails. Presumably, it will be the plot of Price's fake film "Thriller" from the music video and not the zombie dance off on that deserted street, but who would really complain either way?
Another big question is whether Ortega would style the film's leading man after Michael Jackson, or introduce a whole new character altogether. Hopefully it will be the latter; it'll be tough for anyone to fill Jackson's moon-walking shoes. That said, if someone has to do it, may we suggest Justin Timberlake?
Would you want to see "Thriller" made into a movie? And who should star? Tell us in the comments!