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Michael Jackson's cameo appearance in Space Channel 5 under the name "Space Michael" originated from when he was shown a near-finished version of the game by Sega staff member Shuji Utsumi, and immediately wanted to be featured in it. The game's creator Tetsuya Mizuguchi received the call about Jackson's wishes only one month before the game's completion, and initially wanted to turn him down due to these time constraints. However, he and the rest of the team eventually conceded and wanted to include him, having been inspired by his music videos during development. They ultimately added him into the game by substituting a Morolian-controlled NPC character for a model based on him and added moves based on his famous dance moves, initially expecting him to dislike it. Jackson, fully realizing the pressures the team were facing, approved the appearance and provided voice lines for his character. Mizuguchi recalled Jackson's reaction in a 2009 Den-fami Nico Game interview following his death:

Mizuguchi: "I could only do this much, so I wondered if Michael would refuse. Then ... (Mr. Mizuguchi imitating Michael's voice) 'Oh, OK!' …… Because!"

Jackson would reprise the role of Space Michael in an expanded capacity in Space Channel 5: Part 2.
Contributed by MehDeletingLater