Life After Death

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Published August 13, 2009

It’s been nearly two months since his death, and Michael Jackson is worth more than ever. Today’s Times notes that, in the last seven weeks, the late King has made over $100 million in film and merchandising deals–think “commemorative coins, a line of school supplies and a $150 coffee table book.” And another $100 million is expected to materialize before the year is out. His albums have also been consistently outselling  new releases, which shouldn’t come as a shock to anyone who has ventured out to a bar or party or drugstore this summer. There’s talk of turning Neverland into a new, somehow flashier and more haunted, Graceland and the creation of a “permanent attraction” in Las Vegas.

In the meantime, the Verard Gallery has started the bidding on a 1984 Andy Warhol portrait of  Jackson in his red-blazered heyday at $800,000. 30-by-26-inches, it will be on display at the LOS Angeles Art Assn. Gallery in LA today and tomorrow, until one very devoted Pop fan arrives to take it home.