Many people know Michael Jackson solely for his music and dance, and they think of him only as the King of Pop. However, he was not just a master of music; he was also a master of disguise. You can see in this article All of Michael Jackson Disguise (1979-2023)
In this article, we will delve into all the disguises Michael Jackson adopted from his youth until his death, and up to the present day. You will see his mastery in this area and be amazed by it.
Master of Disguise Michael Jackson
Michael often changed his appearance to escape the constant attention of fans and the media, and to enjoy a normal life. He did not want to be recognized at concerts and cinemas. Although being a superstar had its advantages, it was sometimes challenging for Michael Jackson.
He was so popular that every public visit had to be meticulously planned with tight security measures. Moreover, Jackson often locked himself in his hotel room to avoid the crowds that gathered just to see him. Therefore, whenever the star wanted to hide his identity, he would resort to disguises.
The King of Pop used a wide variety of disguises throughout his life. Sometimes it was to escape from his fans, and sometimes it was to approach them unnoticed. Once, Michael was seen in a record store disguised as a beggar, wearing a torn shirt, a pair of dirty shoes, false teeth, and an afro outfit. He also wanted to experience what it felt like to be in the audience.
For all these reasons, he called upon Oscar-winning special effects artist Rick Baker to help him with his appearance.
The disguises made Michael look so much older and so different that no one at the concerts could recognize him. After that, Michael appeared in public many times, enjoying the pleasure of anonymity through his disguises.
So, Michael Jackson might have walked past you many times, but you never noticed…
1979 Michael Jackson Disguise Charlie Chaplin
In 1979, whilst in the UK, Michael Jakson dressed up as Chaplin for a photoshoot in the road where Chaplin once lived.
Michael was taken to a local shop to buy the outfit and the famous black and white photos were taken by British photographer Tony Prime
1980 Michael Jackson With Lionel Richie
Michael Jackson and Lionel Richie were very close friends.
Their relationship started when Lionel’s band was the warm up for the Jackson 5 tour in 1972.
1982 Michael Jackson with Tatum O’Neal
At first glance, you might wonder who the man next to young actress Tatum O’Neal is. However, his eyes give him away; beneath the meticulous disguise, there is 24-year-old Michael Jackson, hoping to enjoy the concert in happy anonymity with his first girlfriend.
Michael Jackson’s first public appearance in an extensive disguise was in 1982, when he stepped out to attend a concert with his girlfriend, Tatum O’Neal.
The photograph from 1982 documents the relationship between Tatum, who was 18 at the time, and Jackson.
Michael Jackson has stated that his first real girlfriend was actress Tatum O’Neal, referring to her as “my first love after Diana Ross.”
Years later, when this photograph resurfaced, Tatum told her friends:
“We were going to a Kool And The Gang concert, but Michael didn’t want to be recognized. ‘There’s a special effects guy who can help.’ We had a great night. No one recognized us, but we got some strange looks because he looked much older than me.”
Members of Jackson’s team, including Oscar-winning special effects artist Rick Baker who worked on the Thriller video, estimated that the disguise cost thousands of dollars.
They added, “Michael loved it. He thought it was a lot of fun. Rick created this beard and did some work on Michael’s lips. He also did makeup to darken his skin.”
Regarding her relationship with Michael, Tatum said, “He was a huge star, but it seemed like he hardly dated anyone and knew very little about life.”
Tatum and Jackson broke up shortly after this photo was taken, and Michael started dating Brooke Shields.
1986 Michael Jackson Disguise Uncle Willy
Michael’s brother Jermaine Jackson has mentioned this disguise in his book ‘You Are Not Alone,’ saying the following..
In the spring of 1986, I embarked on my “Precious Moments” tour across America, and one of the stops was at the “Universal” amphitheater in Los Angeles. Deep down, I was hoping that Michael would come to see me, like the rest of the family, but I knew he was engrossed in his Bad album.
”It’s Jermaine’s night, not mine”
What I didn’t know was that he wanted to attend the concert as a surprise, without causing a stir among the crowd. “It’s Jermaine’s night, not mine,” he told Harrison Funk.
I was in my dressing room with my children Autumn and Jermaine Jr., and I saw Harrison at the door, with a slew of cameras hanging around his neck, accompanied by Kevin Wilson, son of comedian Flip Wilson.
“And this is Uncle Willy,” Harrison said, introducing a pale-looking fan, about 40 years old, wearing a hat. I wasn’t paying much attention because the concert was about to start, but I shook his hand and thanked him for coming.
“I am a big fan of your music,” he told me.
“Thank you,” I replied. Everyone burst into laughter so exaggeratedly that I looked behind me to see if someone was playing a joke on me. But there was no one.
“Jermaine,” Harrison said, “It’s Michael… Uncle Willy is Michael!”
I looked again closely at “Uncle Willy” and despite the thick makeup, his eyes were smiling. “Oh no, no, no, NO!” I shouted. The disguise was so incredible that I am completely sure that when Michael looked in the mirror that night, he wondered who the hell was staring back at him.
During the Bad Tour, this disguise, along with others, allowed him to blend in with the crowd and visit places like Vienna and Barcelona.
1988 Michael Jackson in Berlin Zoo
In 1988, Michael Jackson went “incognito” to visit the Berlin Zoo, rendering himself unrecognizable.
During this visit, Michael aimed to evade his fans and the media by donning a hat, glasses, false teeth, a fake mustache, a wig, and ordinary clothes that were a far cry from his typical stage costumes.
1994 Michael Jackson with Lisa Marie
in 1994 Michael Jackson took Lisa Marie and her children, Benjamin and Danielle, to the DisneyWorld parks and Universal Studios in Florida.
In 1994, Michael Jackson and Lisa Marie Presley made a joint visit to Disney World. At this time, the couple was attracting intense media attention as they had just married a few months earlier, in May 1994.
This visit coincided with the early days of their marriage, when their relationship was a subject of global fascination.
Photos and videos taken during their Disney World visit show the couple enjoying their time and visiting various attractions in the park. Michael and Lisa Marie were seen together in public numerous times during this period, further spotlighting their relationship.
However, this visit also brought along speculations about the nature of their relationship. Some believed that such public outings were an effort to legitimize their relationship, while others thought that they were truly in love.
Regardless, Michael Jackson and Lisa Marie Presley’s visit to Disney World remains a notable moment in the pop culture history of the 1990s. The couple stayed married for two years before divorcing in 1996.
1995 Michael Jackson Disguise Charlie Chaplin
Michael Jackson was a great admirer of Charlie Chaplin.
Approximately 16 years after his 1979 impersonation of Charlie Chaplin, Michael once again transformed into the character.
Michael Jackson recorded one of his favorite songs, “Smile,” for his 1995 album, HIStory: Past, Present and Future—Book I.
A huge fan of Chaplin’s work, Michael paid tribute by dressing up as Chaplin’s famous character “The Little Tramp” during a photo shoot.
The recording of “Smile” was planned to be the album’s final single; however, the release was cancelled, leading to the circulation of a few rare promotional copies. On the cover design, Michael is seen reenacting a scene from Chaplin’s classic 1921 film, The Kid, dressed as The Little Tramp.
Michael held a deep admiration for Chaplin and even visited Charlie Chaplin’s widow, Oona Chaplin, during his Bad World Tour.
In the late 1980s, Jackson became friends with the Chaplin family and recorded a cover of Chaplin’s enduringly popular song “Smile.”
Jackson took great pleasure in dining with the Chaplin family, playing in the garden with Chaplin’s children, and exploring the treasures of Chaplin’s personal film archive at the Chaplin Museum in his Swiss mansion.
Rumors suggest that during Charlie’s final years, he hosted many friends at his Manoir de Ban estate in Switzerland, including Marlon Brando, Truman Capote, and Michael Jackson. However, if they had met, it would not have remained a secret, and there would be photographs. While there are existing photos of Michael with Charlie’s family, there are none with Charlie himself, casting doubt on the claim. Therefore, the claim probably does not reflect the truth.
1996 Michael Jackson Disguise in Ghosts Music Video
In 1996, Michael Jackson transformed into the character of the Mayor for his short film “Ghosts.”
This short film was created to promote Michael Jackson’s “HIStory” album and was directed by Stan Winston.
The film narrates the story of the residents of a town who are frightened by a character named Maestro, portrayed by Michael Jackson, and attempt to drive him out of the town.
In the film, Michael Jackson played not only the character of Maestro but also the town’s mayor and several other characters.
For the role of the mayor, Michael underwent a complete transformation using prosthetic makeup and costumes.
The character of the mayor was depicted as an overweight white man, and Michael’s performance in this role was highly praised by audiences and critics alike.
“Ghosts” short film is considered an example of Michael Jackson’s innovative and boundary-pushing approach to his art.
The special effects, makeup, and dance choreography showcased in the film are indicative of his exceptional talent and passion for his art.
Additionally, the film is seen as a work in which Michael Jackson addressed some personal themes from his own life, portraying a character who is misunderstood and ostracized by society.
The film serves as an impressive example of Michael Jackson’s versatility as an artist and his ability to embody different characters.
Master of Disguise
In conclusion, Michael Jackson has etched himself into memory not only with his musical genius but also with his unique and daring disguises. These wild disguises not only showcase his talent and passion for his art but also reflect his fondness for freedom and his desire to remain anonymous away from the cameras and spotlight. Through these disguises, Michael was able to walk the streets like an ordinary person, momentarily escaping the adoration of his fans and the relentless pursuit of the media.
These adventures prove that he was a legend not just on stage, but in all aspects of life. Michael Jackson’s wild disguises allow us to get to know his art and personality more closely, while also celebrating his fun and free spirit. This demonstrates that he was an artist who inspired not just with his music, but also with his outlook on life.
Although Michael officially left us in 2009, considering his desire to escape the media and his ability to disguise himself, fans of Michael still believe that he has continued his life away from the media in various disguises such as Dave Dave, Jack Crooner, and the Green Man since 2009.
Now, let’s move on to the second half of Michael Jackson’s life, divided into before and after his death. Hold on tight, the disguises in this part are even more exciting…