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Fans around the world celebrate the king of pop's 51st birthday

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In Mexico, thousands of Michael followers succeeded in breaking the world record for the most people dancing to Thriller. Organisers counted 12,937 revellers in total
 Photo: © Getty Images

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Meanwhile director Spike Lee (right) threw a bash in New York to mark the late superstar's birthday
 Photo: © Getty Images

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Ghoulishly-clad fans in Berlin recreate the Thriller video. The party in the German capital mirrored others in London, Paris, Delhi, Barcelona and Bucharest
 Photo: © Getty Images

31 AUGUST 2009

There was moonwalking across the globe at the weekend as fans of late superstar Michael Jackson came together at a series of parties and mass dances to mark what would have been his 51st birthday.

In Mexico, thousands of people, many dressed as ghouls and zombies came together in attempt to smash the record for the most amount of people dancing to Thriller. Organisers said they had been successful, with 12,937 turning up to bust some moves.

Others partied in London, Berlin, Paris Delhi, Barcelona and Bucharest, while in New York, director Spike Lee staged his own party, which he described as a "joyous, festive and celebratory" event.

The 52-year-old filmmaker says he wants to make the bash, which took place in Brooklyn's Prospect Park, an annual event.

Despite heavy rain, 10,000 people turned up to party. "I was just like everyone else. I loved his talent," said Spike, who directed the music video for Michael's 1996 hit They Don't Care About Us.

Fans left messages and cards at both the singer's Neverland Ranch and his star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

And in India, some of Bollywood's biggest stars released a free music track to pay tribute to the idol.

The Jackson family had originally planned to bury Michael on his August 29 birthday. But he will now be laid to rest on Thursday in a private ceremony at the Forest Lawn Memorial Park in Los Angeles.

On Friday his June 25 death was ruled as a homicide by the Los Angeles coroner, which confirmed powerful anaesthetic propofol and the sedative lorazepam were the primary drugs responsible.

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