Michael Jackson’s number one priority since the very moment each of his three children entered the world was to keep them covered and away from the spotlight that he himself had dealt with from such a young age, thus every jaw inside the Staples Center dropped to the floor on Tuesday as we heard daughter Paris speak for the very first time during her father’s memorial concert.
But that wasn’t the only major insight we had into the life of the Jackson children - we also saw Michael’s youngest, 7-year-old Blanket (who was infamously thrust over a fourth-floor balcony in Germany by his father back in 2002) uncovered for the first time. Wearing a dark suit and yellow tie just like his older brother, 12-year-old Prince Michael, Blanket clutched an MJ doll and joined the Jackson family onstage for the final performance of the show.
For the past twelve years, the singer went to extra-ordinary lengths to protect his kids faces by having them wear odd masks, hoodies and cover-ups. And while a couple of rare photographs revealing Paris and Prince Michael’s faces slipped thru the cracks, baby Blanket (who was born via a surrogate) was never fully exposed.
"Being part of the show was very good therapy for the children. They got to see firsthand what their father meant and the reaction his death has garnered throughout the world," Jackson’s longtime family friend and biographer Stacy Brown told Tarts. "But I don’t think we can expect to see a lot of them. The Jackson family won’t exploit them and we know Michael wouldn’t want that."
However one thing we may be able to expect is a possible music career comeback for Jermaine Jackson whose rendition of Charlie Chaplin’s "Smile" brought a tear to every dry eye.
"This could definitely be a catalyst for Jermaine to resume his career," added Brown. "He was the only other brother to make his mark as a solo act and this could now be the right time for him to come back."
A rep for Jermaine was not immediately available for comment.
While the LAPD was preparing for the worst with predictions that as many as two million people could attempt to worm their way into the Staples Center for the memorial concert on Tuesday, only an estimated thousand unticketed fans lined the streets and it seemed everyone was on their best behavior.
Inside the show, those fortunate enough to be there clapped and cheered and rose to their feet when appropriate. But for many of the more touching, somber moments, fans knew to remain silent.
Most male guests wore a fine tuxedo, some pinned on a flower, and the majority of females wore black dresses. Others paid their last respects with jeans and an MJ tribute shirt. Very few actually went all out and dressed up as the King of Pop himself … excluding of course 80’s actor Corey Feldman.
The 37-year-old caused quite a stir as he entered the memorial on Tuesday morning donning a replica of Jackson’s iconic military jacket, sunglasses and a black fedora -- in addition to a white face and slicked back hair. Naturally, he garnered a few perplexed stares from a slew of celebrities on the auditorium floor.
Feldman and Jackson became good friends throughout the 80’s but had not spoken in several years prior to MJ’s death. In 2005 the "Stand By Me" star was subpoenaed to speak out against Jackson during the child molestation trial and said that while nothing sexual ever went on between them, things happened in their friendship that he felt were inappropriate and wrong.
So was it distasteful or admirable that Feldman imitated his former friend?
"Corey is trying to jumpstart his career by parasiting off of an old quasi friendship with Michael," longtime Hollywood publicist Michael Sands said.
A rep for Feldman did not respond for comment.
Jennifer Hudson hasn’t officially come forward and announced that she’s carrying a bun in the oven, but the glowing songstress pretty much confirmed the speculative story with her moving rendition of "Will You Be There" during Michael Jackson’s Memorial Concert.
Hudson’s bump was pretty prominent even thru her loose-fitting white dress and off-stage we couldn’t help but notice that the 27-year-old cautiously touched her tummy several times as she moved up and down from her seat throughout the show. We don’t know exactly when Hudson is expected to give birth, but an inside source close to the Oscar-winner said she could be as far along as eight months.
And while Hudson’s emotive performance was undoubtedly in honor of the late King of Pop, a very close friend told Tarts after the show that the experience was very therapeutic in helping her move forward from her own family tragedy last year in which her mother, brother and nephew were killed in a homicide.
"Being up there and doing this was the best thing for her," said our source. "She wasn’t just paying tribute to Michael, she was paying tribute to her own family members that she lost."
Hudson joined other notables on the Staples floor including Usher, Brooke Shields, Stevie Wonder and John Mayer.