This week Piers Morgan interviewed John Branca and Howard Weitzman about their thoughts on Michael and his life.
Beginning with Mr Branca, Morgan asked about their history together and was told about Michael’s great business instincts, and how much he cared for his fans. Mr Branca came up with the idea of a video of ‘The Making Of Thriller’ which made $1.2million in sales, which more than paid for the expense of funding Michael’s imagination on the ‘Thriller’ project.
When asked about Michael’s purchase of the Beatles Catalogue, Mr Branca said they asked Yoko Ono if she intended to bid for it and she said that she would not, but preferred it to go to Michael rather than some corporation. Paul McCartney’s representatives said that he did not wish to bid on it too – This puts Paul McCartney’s complaints about Michael’s bid and subsequent purchase of the catalogue back into perspective.
Mr Branca continued by saying that The Beatles catalogue is still owned by Michael’s Estate and teamed with the Sony catalogue is worth about two billion, of which Michael owns half. Together with his own MIJAC catalogue and several others, including some Elvis Presley songs, it is worth a huge amount of money. The executors of the Estate intend to keep it for Michael’s children and their families.
Morgan went on to ask about Michael’s current business empire. Mr Weitzman and Mr Branca commented on the ability to create millions and millions of new fans and generate income through new and updated projects.
Morgan then asked if Michael’s debt was out of control. The response was that although Michael had advice from multiple businessmen, not all effective, Michael “left a lot behind” when he died.
Morgan tried to compare Elvis’s Estate with Michael’s and Mr Branca commented that Michael learned at the feet of the executives at Motown, which was very different from the business attitudes in the 1950s. After that time musicians became very much smarter and Michael controlled his assets better than many others. Mr Branca spoke of John McClain, his fellow executor of Michael’s Estate, who knew how Michael thought and kept his decisions true to Michael.
To see the interview please click on the links below.