King of Pop Takes On Cyberspace

Jackson International LLC, the investment company owned by multi-platinum recording artist Michael Jackson, is backing a new interactive entertainment and marketing site known as HollywoodTicket.com.

The site will sell event tickets and related merchandise both directly and through online auctions. It will also run contests for event tickets and publish Hollywood news.

Gloved Finger on Internet Pulse

“The Internet allows us to bring fans together with top talent in creative new forms of entertainment that provide fun, adventure and meaningful interactive experiences for everyone,” Jackson said in a statement.

Jackson, a minority stakeholder in the venture, will be the site’s biggest drawing card. HollywoodTicket.com hopes to lure more celebrities to join in its online promotions.

Jackson will play a significant role in securing participation by major figures in movies, TV, music and other entertainment fields, according to the company.

The move appears to be Jackson’s first independent foray into the Internet business. His recording label, Sony Music, operates a promotional Web site for him at Mjnet.com, but no other official site exists for Jackson himself or Jackson International LLC.

Leading with ‘N Sync

HollywoodTicket.com’s first major promotion will be a sweepstakes giving fans a chance to win tickets and backstage passes to an upcoming ‘N Sync concert in Los Angeles.

Another project, called “That’s My Movie,” will allow visitors to take part in the making of a feature film by voting online for the script concept, actors, costumes, director and other elements. The site plans to offer one major contest per month plus various weekly promotions.

The site was founded by CEO Derek Rundell, whose Internet development company, Rundell, Coursey & Co., has also helped develop Certifiedemail.com, This.com and WebEI.

HollywoodTicket.com Executive Vice President Tim McNeal has close ties to Tinseltown, coming from a post as vice president of drama series development at the WB Network following stints in film production and with the Hollywood talent agency, International Creative Management.

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