Michael Jackson's Thriller jacket headed to Austin Children's Hospital for firsttour stop
Looks like one of the most iconic pieces of music video couture will be finding a new home deep in the heart of Texas.
The uber-recognizable red leather jacket worn by Michael Jackson in the famous "Thriller" video has been auctioned to Austinite Milton Verret, an entrepreneur, philanthropist and gold trader with a somewhat questionable past, for a cool $1.8 million.
According to the Los Angeles Times, a portion of the proceeds from the jacket will go towards Hitchcock blonde Tippi Hedren's Roar Foundation, which has provided sanctuary to Jackson's two Bengal tigers, Thriller and Sabu, since his passing two years ago.
Verret plans to use the jacket to raise funds for various children's charities across the country — much as he did with his Jay Leno autographed motorcycle — starting with its display at Dell Children's hospital in Austin. The proceeds of the motorcycle's sale went to New York-based Bailey's Café, a charity and community arts program for children. Verret is fast becoming a leading philanthropist donating to children's and youth charities in Austin. He financed an unprecedented Make-Wish campaign last year, and back in 2006, it was Verret who bought 8 of the giant guitar sculptures created for the Austin GuitarTown Project. Money from that auction went to the Health Alliance for Austin Musicians, the Austin Museum of Art, American YouthWorks, and the Austin Children's Museum. Then he donated the works back to the City of Austin to be placed as public art.
What will be the next $1 million-plus music video costume to fly off the auction block? My money is on the Britney Spears "Toxic" rhinestone-encrusted unitard or maybe the simple black leotard donned by Beyoncé in "Single Ladies."
Watch the interview with Verret immediately after the auction, from YouTube's RumorFix.