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Michael Jackson: Searching for Neverland (2017)

TV-14 | | Biography, Drama | TV Movie 29 May 2017
Searching for Neverland will reveal firsthand the devotion Michael Jackson had to his children, and the hidden drama that took place during the last two years of his life.


Dianne Houston


Bill Whitfield (based on the book by), Elizabeth Hunter (teleplay by)
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2 nominations. See more awards »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Chad L. Coleman ... Bill Whitfield
Sam Adegoke ... Javon Beard (as Samuel Adegoke)
Nondumiso Tembe ... Grace Rwaramba
Starletta DuPois ... Katherine Jackson
Richard Lawson ... Joe Jackson
Aidan Hanlon Smith Aidan Hanlon Smith ... Prince Jackson (as Aidan Smith)
Taegen Burns ... Paris Jackson
Michael Mourra ... Blanket Jackson
Holly Robinson Peete ... Raymone Bain
Navi ... Michael Jackson
A. Russell Andrews ... Davis
Isabella Hofmann ... Green
Brian Ibsen ... John Feldman
Vincent M. Ward ... Jeff Adams
Ken Colquitt ... Dr. Conrad Murray


Based on the best-selling book, Remember the Time: Protecting Michael Jackson in His Final Days, and told through the eyes of Jackson's trusted bodyguards, Bill Whitfield and Javon Beard. The movie will reveal firsthand the devotion Michael Jackson had to his children, and the hidden drama that took place during the last two years of his life. Written by Lifetime Network (USA)

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Biography | Drama


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Official Sites:

Lifetime [United States]





Release Date:

29 May 2017 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Michael Jackson: Searching for Neverland See more »

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Did You Know?


As he is comforting his children, Michael sings Charlie Chaplin's "Smile" to them. He recorded his own cover of the song as part of his 1995 release "HIStory: Past, Present and Future, Book 1". See more »


Navi's British accent frequently comes through in his lines while portraying Michael Jackson, an American citizen. See more »


Katherine Jackson: Bill, I need you to watch for my son and my grand babies.
Bill Whitfield: Yes, m'am.
Katherine Jackson: I know it's just a matter of time until Fox figure it out where they live.
See more »


Features The Situation Room (2005) See more »

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User Reviews

A Heartbreaking Chronicle of the Tragic Final Days of Once The Most Successful Pop Star of All Time
29 May 2017 | by asrexproductionsSee all my reviews

Before I talk about this film, let me give it some context by talking about who Michael Jackson was, from a historical perspective.

Michael Jackson's "Thriller" album sold 46 MILLION albums. That's 46 times platinum. Not one. Not ten. 46. There is no album that has come close yet, unless you count his "Bad," which was once the #2 selling album of all time. I once read an article where they interviewed several record executives, on the condition of anonymity, to comment on the top artists in music that year (sometime in the 2010s). It became clear to me that the goal of the record industry is to recreate Michael Jackson. Madonna and Janet are female Michael Jackson. Usher and Chris Brown (before Brown screwed it up) are seen as "Michael Jackson types." So is Justin Timberlake. The Weekend. The whole music business in the latter part of the 20th century, was about trying to recreate Michael Jackson, as many times as it could.

And how did he end up? Penniless and essentially alone, struggling to raise his children, according to this riveting film.

MICHAEL JACKSON: SEARCHING FOR NEVERLAND (Dianne Houston, 2017) struck me as a heartbreaking chronicle of a person living strictly off of his fame, but unlike Kim Kardashian or Donald Trump, not being rewarded for it, just using it to survive. Told through the eyes of his personal bodyguards and assistants in the waning years of his life (Chad L. Coleman and Sam Adegoke), Michael Jackson (Navi) struggles to find a home where he can safely live with his children (Aidan Hanlon Smith, Taegen Burns, Michael Mourra) without having to dodge his agents, his fans, maniacal detractors, stalkers, and even his own family, all either trying to live off or destroy him. Throughout all of this, his bodyguards faithfully stay by his side out of pity, even when the money dries up and their own families doubt their sanity for staying so long in a job that simply doesn't pay. I feel the film makes it very clear that Jackson truly was a prisoner of his own success, long after he had stopped being successful. More oddity than King of Pop, the Michael Jackson of MICHAEL JACKSON: SEARCHING FOR NEVERLAND is a broken and tragic figure, buoyed by the love of his children and the last two people who seemed to care. For as the film notes in its final moments, for all the people that spoke highly of him at and after his funeral, no one was there when Jackson died, nor were there for him while he was going through it, struggling to raise his children as any single father might. To the film's credit, I felt it did a good job of showing Michael as flawed, even culpable for his own condition, but hardly deserving of what he got. I feel that it isn't the Michael Jackson story for the casual fan, rather it's a cautionary tale for those seeking to be the Michael Jackson of the future. Despite a performance by Navi that did leave something to be desired (he clearly had a British accent, doing what I felt was at best an adequate job of representing Michael), I personally feel that it effectively humanizes an individual considered a legend in his own time, and serves as a powerful commentary on the cult of celebrity. For me, MICHAEL JACKSON: SEARCHING FOR NEVERLAND is moving, mesmerizing, and difficult to forget.

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