Michael Jackson Estate Sues HBO Over Leaving Neverland Documentary

Lawrence Kim
February 24, 2019

The burgeoning battle between the estate of Michael Jackson and HBO over the controversial Leaving Neverland sex abuse documentary is moving into a full-scale legal war that could cost the premium caber up to $100 million. It focuses on longtime accusations of sexual abuse raised by Wade Robson, 36, and James Safechuck, 40.

In a statement to ET in January, Jackson's estate slammed the four-hour documentary, calling it a "lurid production". "Wade Robson and James Safechuck have both testified under oath that Michael never did anything inappropriate toward them".

Documentary "Leaving Neverland" is due to be broadcast on AT&T owned HBO on March 3 and 4 after a world premiere at the Sundance film festival last month.

Well as relatives of Michael Jackson claim that HBO want "shameless cash in" on an innocent man.

Jackson, who died in 2009, was acquitted at a 2005 criminal trial in California on charges of molesting a different, 13-year-old boy, at his Neverland ranch.

The estate had then too slammed the film and condemned the director for not speaking with anyone from the late singer's family before making it. "Leaving Neverland isn't a documentary, it is the kind of tabloid character assassination Michael Jackson endured in life, and now in death".

The lawsuit could see HBO lose up to $100 million in damages if proven liable on all counts. He also told NBC's "Today" show that he was "psychologically and emotionally, completely unable and unwilling to understand that it was sexual abuse". Safechuck filed a similar civil suit against the estate in 2014. "This will allow everyone the opportunity to assess the film and the claims in it for themselves".

HBO did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the lawsuit, but the channel has consistently defended the documentary in the face of complaints from the estate. Britain's Channel 4 will air it around the same time. "Michael is an easy target because he is not here to defend himself, and the law does not protect the deceased from defamation, no matter how extreme the lies are".

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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