ENCINO (CA) - One day after scientists in Louisville, KY announced plans to perform the world's first full-face transplant, a spokesman for Michael Jackson says the embattled pop star is putting his famous mug on the block for a cool $12M.
"This is a very sensitive and caring and generous thing for Michael to do," said family friend Firpo Carr, reading from a prepared statement. "And the man also needs to raise some serious cash, and fast. You know what I'm telling you?"
The face could fetch upwards of $20M, guesses Janet Melbourne, director of Christie's New York. But not everyone agrees.
"Remember, very little of Michael's face is original," notes British historian and appraiser Clive Hennessey, "so that devalues it to some extent. And let's not forget that it is a used face. It's not clear to me who would want to look like poor Michael these days, given his…difficulties."
The move fanned rumors that Jackson may be planning to ditch his identity before fleeing the country prior to his child molestation trial next month. It also raised questions about what, or who, Jackson will use as a replacement.
"He could wear a mask until something more permanent is found," mused celebrity watcher and former potential someone Joan Lunden. "Liza is still using her face, sort of. Maybe he could wait until hers is available. They are so very close."
A spokeswoman for Ms. Minelli said the entertainer was between comebacks, and not available for comment.