If Michael Jackson is not going to be buried at Neverland Ranch, the ranch may just be relocated to Las Vegas.
E! News reports the current owner of Neverland has drafted plans to dismantle the King of Pop’s once-adored residence and move it from the outskirts of Santa Barbara, Calif., to Sin City and fashion a Graceland-style tourist attraction.
Jackson’s estate is “seriously considering” the idea, although still in its preliminary planning stages.
Colony Capital, the investment firm that saved the property from being auctioned off last year, is reportedly developing a business plan with Jackson’s estate to transport Neverland’s main house and several other structures to what would have to be a pretty large piece of land near the Vegas Strip.
A source with knowledge of the project says Colony executives are drafting proposals for a museum, theater and, pending approval from the family, a burial plot for Jackson’s body (like the one at Graceland where Elvis Presley was laid to rest) where fans could pay their respects to the fallen iconic singer.
Michael G. Dave, a California probate attorney, says it would only require the blessing of estate executors John McClain and John Branca to start launching the plans.
Supposedly it would cost at least tens of millions of dollars to reimagine Neverland in Vegas, sources told E! News. But one insider says Colony Capital founder Thomas Barrack has met with community resistance when it comes to moving forward with development on the current Neverland site, and that moving the whole kit and caboodle to Vegas could end up being the more profitable venture.
Meanwhile, insiders say Jackson’s estate is also in talks with concert promoter AEG Live—which had been organizing Jackson’s London comeback—to set up a tribute show at a major Las Vegas hotel-casino, such as Cirque du Soleil did with the Beatles-themed LOVE at the Mirage.
A representative for AEG declined to comment, but executives have publicly stated they are interested in taking the momentum from the 50 sold-out Jackson concerts that never took place and putting it toward a tribute to the fallen pop star.
When he lived in Las Vegas between 2006 and 2007, Michael Jackson had also worked with businessman Jack Wishna on the idea of a LOVE-style spectacle featuring his music.