Michael Jackson's "This Is It" Opens Tonight

By Caitlin Millat
|  Tuesday, Oct 27, 2009  |  Updated 6:45 PM EDT
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Michael Jackson will take his final bow in a big way at midnight tonight, as his documentary film "Michael Jackson: This Is It" premieres in theaters across the world to honor the fallen music superstar.

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Michael Jackson will take his final bow in a big way at midnight tonight, as his documentary film "Michael Jackson: This Is It" premieres in theaters across the world to honor the fallen music superstar.

Jackson's film will premiere everywhere from Los Angeles and New York City to Asia and Europe Tuesday and Wednesday, arriving simultaneously at theaters in 99 countries worldwide.

The premiere will be anchored by a Los Angeles ceremony where many of the rehearsals featured in the film and Jackson's star-studded memorial were held in late summer.

Celebrities from Zac Efron and Smokey Robinson to fellow  musician Snoop Dogg are on the list for the Nokia Theatre premiere, as are 5,500 other guests who plan to show up to honor Jackson. Security expected thousands of fans to swarm the area, as well -- Jackson lovers waited in line for days to buy tickets for the advance screenings, which will show to sold-out audiences.

Jackson collaborator and "This Is It" producer Kenny Ortega is also expected to attend, as are Jackson's brothers, who announced earlier Tuesday they'd show up to the premiere.

"This Is It" showcases footage of Jackson's final rehearsals for his upcoming comeback tour, which was set to take off in London just weeks after his June 25 death.

Jackson pal and legendary actress Elizabeth Taylor saw an advance screening of the film and said it was the "most brilliant" movie ever made and that she "wept from pure joy" at Jackson's on-screen image.

The film will play in a limited, 16-day run. Sony, the film's distributor, paid $60 million for the rights to the film.

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