The King of Pop Michael Jackson has been dead for nine years, but the legendary artist is still making news. On Saturday, Jackson’s estate released a video for “Behind the Mask,” a cover of influential Japanese electronic band Yellow Magic Orchestra’s song of the same name originally created for his record-smashing1982 album Thriller. Though ultimately cut from Thriller, “Behind the Mask” was eventually released as the third single from the posthumous compilation Michaelin 2010.
Among the many Jackson-inspired masks and disguises in the video is a rabbit mask worn by the saxophonist in the opening frames and then again in later scenes. This mask is similar to one that Jackson wore in the claymation-featuring video for his 1989 song “Speed Demon” which transforms him into a different character to get away from the paparazzi and fans chasing him. In the “Behind the Mask” video, however, the saxophonist who dons the mask takes it off to reveal his face.
Jackson was known to wear disguises when he went out in public. “I do disguises… People know them all, it’s very hard, very hard,” he said in a 2002 interview with Gold Magazine. “Fat suits, buck teeth, glasses, afros, prosthetics, make-up jobs, everything.”
The “Behind the Mask” video also features a red jacket similar to that worn by Jackson in the iconic video for his smash hit “Thriller":