“For 20 years, Wade Robson denied in court and in numerous interviews, including after Michael passed, that he was a victim and stated he was grateful for everything Michael had done for him,” the statement continued. “His family benefitted from Michael’s kindness, generosity and career support up until Michael’s death. Conveniently left out of ‘Leaving Neverland’ was the fact that when Robson was denied a role in a Michael Jackson themed Cirque du Soleil production, his assault allegations suddenly emerged.
“Despite all the disingenuous denials made that this is not about money, it has always been about money – millions of dollars — dating back to 2013 when both Wade Robson and James Safechuck, who share the same law firm, launched their unsuccessful claims against Michael’s Estate,” it continued.
“Now that Michael is no longer here to defend himself, Robson, Safechuck and their lawyers continue their efforts to achieve notoriety and a payday by smearing him with the same allegations a jury found him innocent of when he was alive.”
The estate also argues that the director of “Leaving Neverland” only focused on Jackson’s accusers and provided no platform for others to speak out in defense of the “Billie Jean” singer.
“Tellingly, the director admitted at the Sundance Film Festival that he limited his interviews only to these accusers and their families. In doing so, he intentionally avoided interviewing numerous people over the years who spent significant time with Michael Jackson and have unambiguously stated that he treated children with respect and did nothing hurtful to them. By choosing not to include any of these independent voices who might challenge the narrative that he was determined to sell, the director neglected fact checking so he could craft a narrative so blatantly one-sided that viewers never get anything close to a balanced portrait,” the statement reads.
Since it was announced that “Leaving Neverland” was in production, protesters have been lining up to defend Jackson, online and in person. Protesters set up outside the theater during the film’s debut on Friday, armed with signs bearing quotes from Jackson such as, “Lies run sprints but truth runs marathons.”
Police were heavily in attendance during the showing in Utah, but the debut came and went without any significant incident. During a post-show Q&A session, both men reportedly made it clear that they never received any money for participating in the documentary, according to Deadline. “Leaving Neverland” will be released in a two-part series on HBO this spring.
The Jackson estate, known for its legal prowess, has yet to announce any formal action against the film’s more widespread release.
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