The Estate of Michael Jackson and Sony Music have announced plans to celebrate the 40th anniversary of Jackson’s Thriller with Thriller 40, a double-CD set that’s set for release on Nov. 18. The anniversary package of the album will include one disc featuring the original Thriller album and another with unreleased songs recorded for the album. The news, which comes on the heels of Maxwell’s rendition of Jackson’s “The Lady in My Life” at the 2022 Billboard Music Awards on Sunday night (May 15), marks the latest commemoration of Jackson’s landmark sixth solo effort, which is regarded as the most commercially successful album of all-time.
Released on Nov. 30, 1982, Thriller peaked at No. 1 on the Billboard 200, spending 37 non-consecutive weeks at atop the chart, a record that’s yet to be broken. Producing several hit singles, including “The Girl Is Mine,” “Billie Jean,” “Beat It,” “Wanna Be Startin’ Somethin’,” “Human Nature,” “P.Y.T. (Pretty Young Thing),” and “Thriller,” the album would earn Jackson eight Grammy Awards and has amassed worldwide sales north of 100 million, making Thriller the best selling album of all-time.
As part of the release, different retailers in the U.S. will sell select versions of the album. In the U.S., Walmart will sell an exclusive version of the original Thriller album with an alternate 40th anniversary cover. Target will also have an exclusive version of the original album with a commemorative Thriller 40 vinyl slip mat included in the package. Each version of the anniversary release will also be available outside the U.S. through various retailers.
In addition to the anniversary release of the album, new Thriller 40 merchandise is currently available exclusively through the MichaelJackson.com web store. Mobile Fidelity, which is mastering the Thriller 40 packages using the original analog master tapes of Thriller, is releasing a limited edition run of Thriller as a 33rpm LP, with only 40,000 numbered copies being pressed, as well as a hybrid super audio CD (SACD). Mobile Fidelity has also announced plans to release an UltraDisc two-LP set of Thriller 40 at a later date.