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When actors sign up to blockbuster film franchises, it's hard to imagine anyone else playing their roles. Can you picture another person being Wolverine or Harry Potter and doing a better job?
Well, two of the biggest superhero movies of all time could have been very, very different had a certain pop star got his way. Michael Jackson, the undisputed King of Pop (sorry Justin Bieber), was desperate to be in Spider-Man and X-Men.
Jacko was labelled the real-life incarnation of Peter Pan, as he seemed like he was stuck in his childhood days all his life. His Neverland Ranch was littered with amusement rides, a petting zoo and life-sized statues of Batman, Spider-Man and Superman.
According to Marvel legend Stan Lee, Jackson had a particular liking to the web-slinging neighbourhood friend, Spider-Man. This was in the 1990s, well before the Tobey Maguire film was released or even in development.
Speaking at the 2009 Comic-Con in San Diego, Lee told the crowd: "[Michael] thought I'd be the one who could get him the rights [to make a Spider-Man movie], and I told him I couldn't.
"He would have to go to the Marvel company."
In stark contrast to the multi-billion-dollar empire that Marvel is now, back then, it was struggling financially - and Jackson was genuinely interested in buying the comic book company.
However, if the pop star knew a thing or two about movie making, then he'd know that simply owning Marvel wouldn't be able to get him the part. To achieve that, he would also have to be the director as well, reports Movie Pilot.
Eventually, Jacko was unable to secure the rights to Marvel and his dream of swinging through New York City with spidey senses was gone.
Stan Lee told Moviefone: "I think he'd have been good. I think he'd have been very good. But I must say that Tobey Maguire was wonderful.
"I can't imagine it would have been totally different of course, but maybe not as successful. Michael was not a great businessman."
However, that wasn't the 'Billie Jean' singer's only attempted foray into the superhero world. According to X-Men screenwriter, David Hayter, Jackson also tried to get one of the biggest roles in the franchise: Professor X.
He told THR: "I was brought on as they were casting, so I was lucky enough to be there for some of the people who came in like Terence Stamp for Xavier and Janet Jackson and Mariah Carey for Storm.
"Michael Jackson came in because he wanted to play Professor X. It was amazing."
Patrick Stewart ended up starring in seven X-Men films as the incredible Professor X. Can we also take a second to imagine Mariah Carey being Storm?
One of Jackson's most notable credits in the film industry was in Men in Black II, where he appeared on screen for a couple of seconds as Agent M. While his movie magic wasn't entirely brilliant, you can't blame a person for trying to achieve his goals.
Featured Image Credit: PA/Colombia Pictures
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