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6.9.10

In India, there was an Eklavya who gave his thumb to his guru. I have considered Michael Jackson as my guru and I want to give my body to him," said an emotional Leonard Victor on his move to have 21 surgeries to transform into Michael Jackson on his birthday on Aug 29 at hotel Novotel, Juhu at a party by host Amarjeet Singh Kohli to announce the film, This Was That!

Stating that he loves Michael Jackson more than himself, Leon added, ."I always wanted to look into the mirror and see MJ. Now, I can make it a reality. This will be my tribute to MJ. My first aim after becoming MJ is to buy Neverland and gift it to Michael's children and second aim is to pay off all the debts and loans of MJ so that his name becomes clean."

Producer Amarjeet Singh Kohli, who is backing Leon in his endeavour to turn MJ, said, "I was amazed by the fact that a man is willing to lose his own identity to become his idol MJ. I felt that this should be chronicled on celluloid. And what could be more exciting than a global film! We plan to make this in English and Hindi and are shortlisting the international crew and director for the same. The mounting will be huge and the feel amazing.'

The event was attended besides Leonard Victor and Amarjeet Kohli, by wellwishers including, Madhushree, sufi singer Sahil Multy Khan, Ketan Mehta, Raja Sagoo, Harry Josh, Naved Aslam, Amitabh Dayal, painter Amisha Mehta, Gary Richardson, Reshu Res, director Saurabh Sengupta, K Ajit, Rekha, Varun Badola, Sheena, Nitin Raikwar, Nawaz, Robby Badal among others.

Going back in time, life was not smooth sailing for Leonard though. Reminisces he, "When I heard Michael Jackson for the first time as a nine-year-old, I fell in love with his music. My mind got stuck to his music and I followed his life as well. I used to imagine MJ the way he was in Bad... I started singing MJ in 1991 after Dangerous release.... And it came to me very easily. In 1994, I came to Mumbai from Jabalpur, couldn't speak English but would sing MJ in shows for a band. And it was a hit even with the small-town crowd. An accident took me back to Jabalpur. In 2001, I came back and became a composer and a singer and with that came struggle but MJ's journey with me continued. People used to feel MJ in my music.

"Today, I am who I am because of him. And Michael Jackson is in heaven, sitting next to God and pushing me now. I never thought that what I am embarking on is possible at some point. When MJ was alive, I always felt he is there somewhere for me. Even today, I feel his presence in my life... he is there for me... "You are not alone. I am here for you... Though you are far away, I am here to stay." Touche!


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