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The Michael Jackson Music Video You Likely Forgot Martin Scorsese Directed

Over the years, Martin Scorsese has made a name for himself as one of the most prolific directors in all of Hollywood — and indeed, one of the most accomplished filmmakers in history. Though he's primarily known for his work in crime and gangster films like "The Departed" and "Goodfellas," his films cover a wide variety of topics such as catholic guilt, the corruption of power, and isolation. He's a master of his craft, and is uncompromising in his view that film ought to be art in its purest form — famously criticizing Marvel's superhero movies a few years back, and claiming they were more "theme parks" than true "cinema."

That said, it may surprise some fans to learn that the man who built his entire career on serious, incredibly dramatic films has also directed a fairly famous music video — and he did it for the King of Pop himself, Michael Jackson.

Scorsese directed the music video for Michael Jackson's Bad

When Michael Jackson released his seventh album, simply titled "Bad," in the summer of 1987, it was a comeback of sorts for the artist, whose previous album, "Thriller," had been released five whole years prior. Jackson recruited Martin Scorsese to direct the music video for the album's titular single — and their collaboration resulted in one of the most iconic music videos in history (via IMDb).

In classic Scorsese fashion, he managed to make the music video for "Bad" into a sort of personal project, connecting it back to the New York City streets that he explores so often in his films, and referencing films like "West Side Story" through the video's choreography and story. The entire music video is really an 18 minute short film, which follows Jackson's character Darryl, a teenager who attempts to leave behind his life of crime and start his new life at a private school. He runs into his old gang at a subway station, who chastise him for not being "bad" anymore — which leads into the song.

All told, Scorsese and Jackson's collaboration was a resounding success, and perhaps the next time you're watching a Scorsese film, you might consider what was going through the director's mind when he was filming Michael Jackson dancing around a subway station in his heavily-decorated leather jacket.