A sketch of the 'MJ' set by Derek McLane.

Myles Frost will star as the lead role in “MJ,” rather than the previously announced Ephraim Sykes, the production said Tuesday. 

Myles Frost. (Photo: Regina Mogilevskaya)

Sykes, who was announced as Michael Jackson in November 2019, is leaving the production to shoot a feature film, said producers Lia Vollack Productions and the Michael Jackson Estate. Frost, a native of Washington, D.C., will be making his Broadway debut in the role. 

Before joining the production, Sykes was starring as David Ruffin in “Ain’t Too Proud.” “MJ” was originally scheduled to begin performance July 6, 2020.

“It’s with a heavy heart that I depart ‘MJ,’” Sykes said. “This year has brought a lot of change and opportunity, and although it’s bittersweet to say goodbye to an iconic role and production, I look forward to what is to come. “

Opening night for “MJ” has been scheduled for Feb. 1, 2022. The musical begins previews at the Neil Simon Theatre on Dec. 6, 2021. 

The musical features a book by Lynn Nottage, direction and choreography by Christopher Wheeldon and scenic design by Derek McLane.