Michael Jackson and Lisa Marie Presley interviewed in 1995
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Michael Jackson proposed to Lisa Marie Presley over the phone in late 1993. He cooed: “If I asked you to marry me, would you do it?” The King of Pop later gave the only child of Elvis Presley a real proposal: in a library with a 10-carat diamond. The star had known the 26-year-old for many years and had a crush on her for a long time. Unfortunately, their relationship did not last.
The young lovers Michael and Lisa Marie eloped to get married and were wed on May 26, 1994, at an extremely private ceremony in the Dominican Republic. It was so private that even Lisa Marie’s mother, Priscilla Presley, didn’t know.
Less than two years later, on this day, January 18, in 1996, Lisa Marie filed for divorce from the star. She claimed December 10, 1995, was their date of separation.
Shortly after getting married Lisa Marie released a statement revealing her new surname and her reasoning behind keeping their relationship a secret until then. She said: “My married name is Mrs Lisa Marie Presley-Jackson. My marriage to Michael Jackson took place in a private ceremony outside the United States (11) weeks ago. It was not formally announced until now for several reasons; foremost being that we are both very private people living in the glare of the public media. We both wanted a private marriage ceremony without the distraction of a media circus.”
Lisa Marie added that she would “support” him going forward, as well as “raise a family” with him.
Michael Jackson married Lisa Marie Presley in 1994 (Image: GETTY)
Michael Jackson and Lisa Marie Presley discuss proposal in 1995
Michael Jackson and Lisa Marie Presley were together for just under two years (Image: GETTY)
Lisa Marie said: “I am very much in love with Michael, I dedicate my life to being his wife. I understand and support him. We both look forward to raising a family and living happy, healthy lives together. We hope friends and fans will understand and respect our privacy.”
But years later Lisa Marie explained how she told Michael she was not ready to have any more children just yet. At the time she had a four-year-old, Riley, and a small baby, Benjamin, with her former husband Danny Keough. And Michael was not happy with this answer, she revealed.
Michael Jackson and Lisa Marie argued over having children (Image: GETTY)
Michael Jackson: Lisa Marie later filed for divorce from the star in 1996 (Image: GETTY)
Lisa Marie recalled: “I had children and I knew bringing children into certain circumstances you have to make sure that everything is safe and secure and okay. And I wanted to make sure he and I were really, really united because we were going to be up against so much.”
Things were made worse when Michael had told his wife that Debbie Rowe – a woman he had known for 15 years – was more than willing to bear his children if Lisa Marie was not.
Lisa Marie continued: “I know she [Rowe] was there the whole time telling him she would do it. He would tell me: ‘If you’re not gonna do it, Debbie said she’ll do it.’ And we would get into arguments because that wasn’t how to handle it. But that’s how he knew how to handle it: ‘If you’re not going to do it, this person will. Are you going to do it or not?'”
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Less than a year after Lisa Marie divorced Michael he married Debbie on November 13, 1996. Their impromptu wedding ceremony took place at the Sheraton Hotel in Sydney, Australia. He was in the middle of his HIStory tour. Debbie wore a black dress.
She later detailed why she was Michael’s shoulder to cry on. She remembered: “Michael was divorced, lonely and wanted children. I was the one who said to him: ‘I will have your babies.’ I offered him my womb. It was a gift. It was something I did to keep him happy.”
Debbie gave birth to two of Michael’s three children; Prince Jackson, who was born on February 13, 1997, and Paris Jackson, who was born on April 3, 1998. Michael was requested a divorce a year later. The couple were officially split on October 8, 1999. Before the divorce was finalised, however, an enormous settlement was agreed. Debbie received a staggering $10 million, while Debbie gave Michael full custody of their children.