Jackson movie to get mass worldwide premiere

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LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - The Michael Jackson movie “This Is It” -- based on footage from concert rehearsals before his death in June -- will have simultaneous premieres in more than 15 cities around the world next month, the studio behind the film said on Monday.

“This Is It” opens to the general public on October 28 for a limited two-week run. While Hollywood movies often have several premieres around the world, they rarely happen at the same time.

But for “This Is It,” more than 15 cities, including New York, Rio de Janeiro, London, Berlin and Seoul will host simultaneously premieres with a red carpet event in Los Angeles on October 27, said Sony Pictures, which paid $60 million for rights to the rehearsal footage. Names of the other premiere-night cities were not released.

The opening events will feature satellite transmissions of Hollywood stars arriving at the premiere in Los Angeles. London’s premiere will happen after midnight local time on October 28, while Seoul’s event is scheduled for the morning of that day.

In all, more than 25 cities worldwide will have premieres for the movie but not all will take place at the same time.

In the days before he died of an overdose of prescription drugs on June 25, Jackson was rehearsing for a comeback with 50 sold-out shows in London.

The $60 million movie deal was made between Jackson’s estate and concert promoter AEG Live and Sony Pictures.

Based on proceeds from the movie, business deals and album sales that have arisen since Jackson’s death, administrators of his estate expect to generate more than $200 million in revenue before the end of the year.

Sony Pictures is a division of Sony Co.

Editing by Jill Serjeant and Bill Trott