The Making of Michael Jackson’s ‘Thriller’
Is there a more famous video dance sequence in history than [lastfm link_type="artist_info"] Michael Jackson[/lastfm]‘s zombie moves in the video for “Thriller?” Watch what was at the time the most expensive music video ever made.
The music video was destined to be a success from the start, especially due to its star-filled cast. Jackson’s girlfriend is played by Ola Ray, a former Playboy centerfold. The video was directed by Hollywood director John Landis, whose other films include Animal House and The Blues Brothers.
Michael Peters, who had worked with Michael Jackson in Beat It, did the choreography. Finally, the video featured spoken word-performance by legendary actor Vincent Price.
The video later became known as the greatest music video ever made, and it won several awards to show it. Those awards included the “Best Long Form Video” Grammy Award, as well as the “Best Overall Performance in a Video” and the “Viewer’s Choice” MTV Awards.
In addition, Making Michael Jackson’s Thriller, the making off video, won the “Best Video Album” Grammy Award and Michael Peters won the “Best Choreographer” MTV Award.
In 2006, the Guinness World Record Book listed it as the “most successful music video”, after it sold over 9 million copies worldwide. In 2009, the same year as Michael Jackson’s death, it was selected for the National Film Registry by the Library of Congress, becoming the first music video ever to achieve such an honor. The Library of Congress described it as “culturally, historically or aesthetically” significant.”
This video clip made an astounding impact on popular culture, from the famous dance routine performed by a zombie Michael Jackson and his crew of zombie dancers to the jacket the King of Pop was wearing.
MJ’s famous red leather jacket became the “hottest outerwear fad of the mid-1980s” and was sought out by hundreds of teenagers.
It would later inspire Broadway musicals, internet memes, international dance events and dozens of parodies.
Almost thirty years after its release date on December 2, 1983, one thing still remains tough to argue: no other video clip in the history of music is more famous, more popular, or more fun to watch than Michael Jackson’s Thriller.