Yes, you read that correctly. According to a bizarre urban legend, Michael Jackson, Elizabeth Taylor, and Marlon Brando road-tripped from New York to Ohio together in 2001, fleeing the city in the immediate aftermath of 9/11. As the story goes, Jackson had invited Taylor and Brando to his concert at Madison Square Garden the day before the attacks, and afterwards, with all air travel suspended, the trio rented a car together in an attempt to make it back to California, taking turns driving and stopping at nearly every fast food restaurant they passed at Brando’s behest. The saga of the alleged trip emerged nearly a decade later when it was reported by Vanity Fair in 2011, with Jackson’s former assistant claiming it was all true and one of Taylor’s assistants insisting that no, she stayed in New York after 9/11.
This tale, which has already inspired a short story by Zadie Smith, is now the subject of an upcoming TV movie for Sky Arts, with a script from Scottish writer Neil Forsyth and starring Joseph Fiennes as Jackson, Stockard Channing as Taylor, and Brian Cox as Brando, The Guardian reports. Rumors of the project surfaced last month, but today, Fiennes confirmed his role in it, telling WENN, “It’s a challenge. It’s a comedy…It’s a fun, lighthearted, tongue-in-cheek road trip of what celebrity of that kind is like. But also it’s rather beautiful and poignant about their relationships.”
Yes, everything about this is absolutely insane.