A 30-second clip from
The clip appeared on the Grammys YouTube page, and in it a little girl frolics in a jungle paradise filled with butterflies and greenery while Jackson's song plays. More footage from the 3-D film will be shown on Sunday during a tribute by Usher, Jennifer Hudson, Carrie Underwood, Celine Dion and Smokey Robinson.
"To try and imitate him, to try and represent him, it just didn't feel to me like it was something we should do with one of those songs that you just don't ever necessarily want to see anybody but Michael doing," Grammy co-executive producer Ken Ehrlich said in a conference call about the tribute. " 'Beat It,' 'Billie Jean' or so many of the others. This felt to us like it was really a way of representing him. It's like a tip of the hat. This song was so important to him."
A portion of the "Earth Song" footage will be shown at the Grammys, but it will not contain images of Jackson, only his voice. "It starts out with some beautiful images of the world and our environment, and Michael's childlike love for animals and birds and dolphins," Ehrlich said. "It introduces a little girl, a beautiful little girl who at one point in the film basically goes to sleep, and when she wakes up — she's in a forest and it's very pastoral — and when she wakes up, all of a sudden it's all changed and it's bad. The environment is being affected and trees are being cut down."
CBS, which airs the Grammy Awards, has teamed up with Target to provide free 3-D glasses to those who want to view the footage in 3-D at home. They will be available January 24 through January 31 at Target stores. This is the first time an awards show has broadcast a segment in 3-D.
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