Michael Jackson’s Brothers Say ‘Leaving Neverland’ Doc Neglects Facts


The household of Michael Jackson had a sense the years-old youngster molestation allegations towards the pop famous person would resurface sooner or later. So they are saying they weren’t fully stunned to be taught forthcoming HBO documentary would function two of his accusers.

“I assumed, ‘Oh right here we go once more,’” Jackson’s oldest brother Jackie Jackson mentioned Tuesday (Feb. 26) of the second he discovered of Leaving Neverland whereas on tour in Australia. “That’s the very first thing we mentioned,” Jackie Jackson mentioned throughout an interview with The Associated Press seated subsequent to his brothers Tito, Marlon and his nephew, Taj.

The documentary, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival to a standing ovation, will beginning Sunday  (March three) and air the abuse allegations of two males, Wade Robson and James Safechuck, who had beforehand denied Jackson molested them and supported him to authorities and in Robson’s case, very publicly.

“It was going to be the 10-year anniversary,” Taj Jackson mentioned, referring to his uncle’s June 2009 loss of life. “I keep in mind a yr in the past I used to be like, ’This is simply too appetizing for the media. They’re going to do one thing. This is the time when everybody comes out of the woodwork, the identical forged, the identical characters which were discredited all through the years. They have a platform now to speak about Michael Jackson.”

It was the most recent and most public pushback from the household and Jackson property, which have repeatedly denounced the documentary in current weeks by means of written statements, a lawsuit, and letters to HBO and Britain’s Channel four, which plan to air the movie. HBO introduced Wednesday (Feb. 27) that it'll air a particular on Monday evening during which Oprah Winfrey additionally interviews Robson and Safechuck.

Their central criticism has been the movie’s failure to speak to relations or different defenders of Jackson, whom they insist by no means molested a toddler. The brothers mentioned they'd have answered the allegations had the filmmakers requested them.

“Oh, we undoubtedly would have come and talked to them in regards to the scenario ... to guard our brother,” Tito Jackson mentioned. “He’s not right here no extra. He’s handed, and, we’re his brothers, we’re supposed to do that.”

Marlon Jackson added, “I take a look at it as sure, you’re defending your brother, however you’re telling the reality, and we wish individuals to know the reality. And I don't perceive how a filmmaker could make a documentary and never need to communicate to myself or among the different households that have been at Neverland.”

The documentary’s director Dan Reed has repeatedly defended his movie, which makes use of solely the voices of Robson, Safechuck and their households. “It’s the story of those two households and never of all the opposite individuals who have been or weren’t abused by Michael Jackson,” Reed told the AP the day after the movie’s premiere. “People who hung out with him can go, ‘he couldn’t presumably be a pedophile.’ How do they know? It’s absurd.”

Robson, 36, and Safechuck, 40, each got here ahead as adults, first 2013 lawsuits and later within the documentary, to speak in regards to the alleged abuse, which Robson says began when he was 7, Safechuck when he was 10. Both had beforehand instructed authorities there had been no abuse, with Robson testifying in Jackson’s protection on the 2005 molestation trial that ended with the famous person’s acquittal.

Jackson relations say they have been particularly surprised to first hear such allegations coming from Robson, a famous choreographer who has labored with Britney Spears and ’N Sync. Many Jacksons, together with Taj, had recognized Robson and his household since he was a toddler. Robson had dated Jackie Jackson’s daughter for over seven years.

“I used to be like ’No that may’t be Wade Robson not the identical man that I knew, They will need to have obtained the names incorrect,” Taj Jackson mentioned. “Wade was essentially the most adamant individual when it got here to 2005 and the trial. He was their first protection witness. He was the star witness. He was adamant that nothing ever occurred.”

Taj Jackson mentioned he remembers thanking Robson the day he testified, and Robson responding that it was the least he may do for Michael.

“To see that 180, it looks like the largest backstab that you might presumably really feel,” he mentioned.

The movie acknowledges and discusses the boys’s preliminary denials of abuse. Both say they skilled trauma that emerged as adults after they began to just accept what occurred to them.

No one within the Jackson household has any reminiscence of assembly Safechuck. They have centered their criticism on Robson, whose allegations, they are saying, have coincided with monetary issues. They say specifically that being denied a job with a Jackson-themed Cirque du Soleil present prompted him to vary his story.

Robson has mentioned it had no bearing on the allegations, and that he actually removed himself from the Cirque du Soleil show as a result of he was having nervous breakdowns. Those prompted him to speak to his therapist for the primary time in regards to the abuse. The males’s lawsuits have been thrown out on technical grounds, however are on enchantment.

The Jackson estate’s lawsuit, filed final week, alleges Leaving Neverland violates a 1992 contract agreeing the channel wouldn't disparage Jackson sooner or later. HBO known as the lawsuit a determined try to undermine the movie. Jackson’s household urged these inclined to look at Leaving Neverland to look deeper into the scenario.

“That’s all we’re anxious about is simply information,” Marlon Jackson mentioned. “The information, that are public document, inform a completely totally different story than what this documentary talks about.”