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Home / News Archive / News July 2019

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Michael Jackson’s Legacy: Louie Armstrong Jazz Camp Receives $20,000 In Honor Of Michael Jackson And His Legacy Of Philanthropy. 31-07-'19

Michael JacksonNew York – Several recent news stories, including Biz New Orleans, reported on the Louis “Satchmo” Armstrong Summer Jazz Camp being the recipient of a $20,000 gift by an anonymous philanthropist who was inspired by the #HonorMJ Campaign.

The Twitter-launched campaign was created for fans around the world to honor Michael Jackson’s life through their own acts of kindness and generosity in observance of the tenth anniversary of his passing on June 25th. This donation, prompted by the campaign, will be used to support Summer Jazz Camp programs.

An article in JazzTimes quoted Summer Jazz Camp Executive Director Jackie Harris as saying the anonymous donation affirmed that Michael Jackson’s devotion to music, education, and the arts lives on.

This summer, the Summer Jazz Camp is celebrating its 25th year of providing youth and young adults with an intensive jazz program that includes music, dance, and voice education. Held at Loyola University Music & Communications Complex in New Orleans, students from around the country and abroad attend the renowned program each summer. This year, the program ran from June 24-July 12.

Source: Eurweb / Billie Jean


Lisa Marie Presley Inks Massive Deal For Bombshell Book About Michael Jackson, Elvis. 30-07-'19

Lisa Marie PresleyLisa Marie Presley is inking a blockbuster book deal to reveal “shocking” details about her ex Michael Jackson and a new perspective on her father, Elvis Presley, Page Six has exclusively learned.

A source said that the Lisa Marie book is such a bombshell, she has sold it to Gallery Books for between $3 million and $4 million.

The tome “promises shocking revelations about Michael Jackson and a completely new understanding of Elvis,” a source added.

Lisa Marie, now 51, was married to the King of Pop from 1994 to 1996.

They secretly wed in a private ceremony before unveiling the relationship publicly on MTV, and splitting just two years later.

In 2010, she offered a somewhat cryptic account of how the marriage ended in an interview with Oprah Winfrey: “There was a very profound point in the marriage when he had to make a decision. Was it the drugs and the sort of vampires, or me? And he pushed me away.” She added that by “vampires” she meant “sycophants.”

She also told Oprah, “The one thing that correlates with Michael and with my father on this subject is that they had the luxury of creating whatever reality around them they wanted to create.”

She sidestepped allegations of Jackson’s inappropriate relationships with children in a 1995 interview with Diane Sawyer, saying, “I know that he’s not like that.”

The allegations have returned with the release of HBO’s 'Leaving Neverland', and Jackson’s estate has sued over the doc. The marriage is covered in the film, but Presley hasn’t commented.

Lisa Marie — who’s also been married to Danny Keough, Nicolas Cage and Michael Lockwood — has been open about her past addiction to painkillers, writing the foreword for the book “The United States of Opioids.”

Her new book is one of a number of high-profile projects on Elvis: A Baz Luhrmann-directed biopic on the King of Rock ’n’ Roll will shoot next year.

Reps did not get back to us.

Source: Page Six / Billie Jean


Sailors Honors Michael Jackson. 30-07-'19

Do you remember the time when Michael Jackson dated Madonna and seen in public with a Sailors jacket?

Well the brand is back in Japan and to honor the King of Pop, they have re-released the special jacket he wore with some extra in the back “MICHAEL”!

That ultra collector is set for 98,000 yen (around £741.00).

“SAILORS” is a fashion brand that was born in 1985 when Shizuka Miura made a trainer with Hori as the character.

The brand will release a very limited edition of the jacket between August 9 to 18!

As well as the jacket, few other items will be available:

Sailors JacketThe jacket is not an official Michael Jackson product but it is a nice touch and again only available in Japan!

The reproduction of the jacket is the one made especially for Michael by its owner:

For more information and details to order, click here.

Source: MJ Vibe / Billie Jean


Michael Jackson Album 2019 Sales, Streams, Up Significantly Despite Documentary “Scandal” And Calls For Bans On His Music. 29-07-'19

Michael JacksonRemember when the documentary 'Leaving Neverland' looked like it was going to hurt Michael Jackson’s legacy?

Remember all the calls for banning Jackson’s music from radio, from the culture?

Well, it didn’t work out that way.

According to numbers from BuzzAngle, Michael’s music has soared in 2019. (I must say, I was surprised.)

To date, Jackson’s numbers for Album Sales including streaming, downloads, and CD purchases are up 15.7% over 2018. His total at this point last year was 425,330. This year it’s 498,806.

Jackson’s CD sales are down slightly, but that’s true for just about every recording artist. His streaming numbers are a different story, however. His streaming (audio, video, etc) is up 39.7% over last year. (We’re using the same 30 week period each year.)

Jackson’s total streaming so far in 2019 is 1,127,200,908. Yes, over 1 billion. Jackson has been dead since June 2009 and even then hadn’t issued a record of new material since 2001.

Roughly a third of Jackson’s album sales this year come from 'Thriller' and its singles, and individual tracks.

This information should come as good news to the Jackson estate. They’ve still got a Broadway musical cooking for next year. It was briefly derailed, but with Jackson’s music’s popularity on the rise, they should feel emboldened to move ahead.

Maybe all publicity really is good publicity!

Source: Roger Friedman; Fox News / Billie Jean


Mute Who? Michael Jackson’s Songs Still Played At Weddings & Parties! 29-07-'19

Michael JacksonFor a while now, DJ's have been monitoring what they are playing at weddings and Parties under “DJ Intelligence”.

The data has been collected to show all the songs played and requesting during weddings and parties through different platforms used by DJ's.

The Top 200 has been released last June and Michael Jackson has 6 of his songs in the top 200 adding 2 more from the Jackson 5!

It seems that the general public has not fallen for the fake documentary from Dan Reed and muting Michael Jackson’s music is not an option!

Not to mention the competition is hard with new artists and current songs, having 6 songs performed by the King of Pop in the list is amazing!

Here the songs and positions in the DJ Intelligence Top 200:

48. 'Billie Jean' - Michael Jackson
65. 'P.Y.T (Pretty Young Thing)' - Michael Jackson
76. 'Don’t Stop ‘Till You Get Enough' - Michael Jackson
109. 'Thriller' - Michael Jackson
112. 'The Way You Make Me Feel' - Michael Jackson
125. 'I Want You Back' - The Jackson 5
149. 'Beat It' - Michael Jackson
160. 'ABC - The Jackson 5

Source: MJ Vibe / Billie Jean


I Want You Back (DJ Lead Remix) CoverNew Official Remix Of 'I Want You Back'. 28-07-'19

On the occasion of the 60th anniversary of the Motown, a new official remix of 'I Want You Back' of the Jackson 5 has just been made in Japan by DJ Lead.

Coming from the DJ label 'Sugarbitz', DJ Lead has made this remix just as DJ Komori has made the one of Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell's Is not 'No Mountain High Enough' while TJO has made 'It's A Shame' by The spinners.

DJ Lead started his career in 1998, where his passion for Hip Hop music, combined with a strong work ethic, saw him grow to become one of the most popular DJs in Japan.

You can listen to this Jackson 5 'I Want You Back' DJ LEAD remix on the usual platforms or on YouTube Music.

Source: MJ France / Billie Jean


Michael JacksonMichael Jackson Birthday Events. 27-07-'19

The Michael Jackson Birthday events are this year in different countries around the world.

•São Paulo, Brazil: Sunday 25 August. MJ Celebration Party on Paulista Avenue, dancing covers, tributes, games and contests. For more details, contact @DanielJackson7 on twitter.
•London, England: Wednesday 28 August (2pm-5:30pm), Thursday 29 August (11am-6:30pm), Friday 30 August (11am-6pm), Saturday 31 August (11am-2pm). At Gallery Different, “Michael: HIS_story” exhibition. Admission £3
•Las Vegas, Nevada: Wednesday 28 August. Casual fan dinner, Slice of Vegas, 7pm, paid event (you pay for your own dinner).
•Las Vegas, Nevada: Thursday 29 August. MJ Fan Meet and Greet afternoon tea. RiRa Irish Pub at Mandalay Bay, 11am, $35 per person, limited tickets.
•Las Vegas, Nevada: Thursday 29 August. Michael Jackson ONE celebration at Mandalay Bay, paid event.
•Las Vegas, Nevada: Friday 30 August. MJLive at Stratosphere Hotel Casino. Showtime 7pm. Paid event, tickets must be purchased.
•Santa Monica, California: Saturday 31 August. Private buffet-style candlelight dinner and Bad concert film screening at fan Davina Baham‘s residence. Paid event in the way of a $5-$10 cover charge to help pay for the food and drinks.
•Perth, Australia: Saturday 31 August. MJ Birthday Charity Lunch, 12-5pm, Dome café Belmont (next to the Reading Cinemas). Please bring a charity donation of a gold coin, and of course if you’re eating and drinking you’ll need to buy your own foods and drinks.
•Brussels, Belgium: In the Studio with MJ, 3 days of events! Friday 30 August (6-9pm), MJ Birthday Remix seminar; Saturday 31 August (11am – 8pm), Brad Sundberg, Brad Buxer AND Michael Prince seminar; Sunday 1 September (11am – 8pm) In the Studio With MJ 2019 seminar + The Tour of Neverland. Tickets and event details.
•Copenhagen, Denmark: Saturday, 31 August. No details available yet. Contact @MooWalkersDK on twitter for more info and check our shownotes for more links if we get them!
•Zurich, Switzerland: Saturday 21 September. Michael Jackson Night at the Mundwerk Club. Doors open at 7pm, party and performances from 9pm (there may be a club cover charge for this). Follow @jackson_ch the Swiss MJ community twitter for more.

Source: The MJ Cast / Billie Jean


MTV May Cut Michael Jackson’s Name From Vanguard Award At VMA's. 27-07-'19

MTV Video Vanguard AwardAfter continued fallout from the fake documentary 'Leaving Neverland', MTV is considering cutting ties with Michael Jackson’s name for its annual Video Music Awards in August.

“There’s a lot of heated discussion at the network about how to handle the Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award this year, and it’s getting ugly,” a source told. “There’s talk about if they should change the name, or get rid of it altogether. [There’s also talk] about who would pre­sent it and who would accept it. It’s a mess.”

Michael Jackson’s estate denied the allegations and filed a $100 million lawsuit against HBO for violating a clause from a 1992 contract that barred the network from making “disparaging remarks” about the King of Pop. HBO countered in court docs that the contract had expired.

But months after the film aired, there are still shock waves being felt in the industry.

“MTV [potentially] banning his name is the latest fallout. They haven’t decided yet, but they’ve been going back and forth on it. There are a lot of issues,” a source said.

The award is not given annually, which could also buy MTV time.

Michael Jackson received the Vanguard Award in 1988, and MTV renamed it in his honor in 1991.

Rihanna, Beyoncé, Kanye West, Britney Spears, U2 and Jennifer Lopez (last year’s recipient) are some of the stars to have been honored under the name.

MTV announced its VMA nominees this week, with Ariana Grande, Taylor Swift, Billie Eilish and Lil Nas X topping the list. Grande and Swift lead the nominations with 10 each.

But while MTV announced Lopez as the MJ Vanguard recipient last July, ahead of the late August airdate, the network so far remains mum on whether there is a recipient this year.

MTV did not confirm or deny this yet.

NOTE: This is not the first time MTV renamed this award. Named after Michael Jackson in 1991, the name was dropped in 2003 and reinstalled in 2011 (Britney Spears received it).

Source: Page Six / Billie Jean


Notice Of Live Show 'For You Michael Tour' In Tribute To Michael Jackson. 26-07-'19

For You Michael TourWe received the opinion of a show in honor of Michael Jackson that will take place on September 14, 2019 in Epernay (51).

By a tribute to the King of Pop, the association Jam presents the live concert 'For You Michael Tour' (new concept), Saturday, September 14, 2019 from 19:30 at the festival hall of Epernay.

A breathtaking and unique show in France, danced, sung by performance performer Matis Jackson accompanied by his dancers.

Mathieu Sinitambirivoutin alias Matis Jackson French of Guadeloupean origin is professor martial arts. At the age of four he was dancing and singing already on the tracks of his idol Michael Jackson. Coming from a very musical family, he quickly finds his way, that of the Soul, R&B, Hip-hop.

Opening of the doors from 6.30 pm accompanied by a paid restoration.

Prices: -12 years: 10 €, adult: 12 €, group rate by booking by email at associationjamcontact@gmail.com or 03 26 54 79 77.

More info about Matis Jackson matis-jackson.com.

Source: MJ France / Billie Jean


Objetivo Michael Jackson Book Cover'Objetivo Michael Jackson' Book Is Released. 26-07-'19

The book 'Objetivo Michael Jackson' is released in Spain on July 16 and it is all about the death of Michael.

The conspiracy to end the pop star. Early morning on June 25, 2009, Michael Jackson's doctor enters his room and finds him breathless. Your pulse is barely detectable. Hours later his death is declared in the medical center of the ucla Ronald Reagan, and the news goes around the world. The case of Michael Jackson was so famous that nobody knows him. That is the author's answer to why she has been involved in the investigation of what could have happened that night.

The official version does not add up. Its result is the present book where we can see Jackson's psychological profile and, the psychological autopsy he performs, under the strange mysteries of his death. In this book Calleja opens a thorough investigation, where the reader will be able to solve at the same time the infinite that ten years after his death remain unanswered: what if the doctor who was convicted of involuntary manslaughter, was not to blame for the death of Michael Jackson?

What if the homicide was not involuntary? Who is behind his death? Who benefited his death? Was he more dead than alive? And, most fundamentally, who was really Michael Jackson? From the hand of the author you will be able to know the forensic testimonies, the federal, police, judicial evidence, and the economic data until the rabid news.

You can see the images, graphics and unpublished documents in your file. Everything at your disposal to give your verdict. A whole case, yes, a case like "Michael Jackson target," a mystery that continues to move the world, because Michael Jackson is — they like it better, or they like it less — more news than ever.

Publisher: ALMUZARA; Edición: Arcopress
Author: Concha Calleja
Pages: 280
ISBN: 978-8417828158
Printed: Spain
Guide price: 15,15 €

Order the book here at Amazon.

Source: Amazon / Billie Jean


Kingvention Special Guests’s Message To The Fans. 24-07-'19

Kingvention, The Michael Jackson Convention, is around the corner!

The 2 first speakers who will be in London on September 21 have recorded special messages for the fans attending the event!

Larry Stessel,
Marketing Director – 'Off The Wall', 'Thriller', 'Bad'.

 

Darryl Phinnessess,
Vocalist – 'Bad', 'Dangerous', 'HIStory', 'This Is It'.

 

For more information and tickets, visit KINGVENTION.

This year, the Kingvention Team will bring a 3-story-high picture of Michael Jackson outside the venue which is in central London but they need your help to make this a reality!

Any donation is welcome – For more information, click here.

Source: MJ Vibe / Billie Jean


Michael Jackson Official 2020 Calendar Will Be Released This Month. 24-07-'19

Calendar 2020 CoverThe official Michael Jackson 2020 calendar by Browntrout comes out this July under Triumph International license.

In square format, this calendar offers you to live all year 2020 with Michael Jackson via great photos. It consists of 13 images since the last four months of 2019 are also on one page.

Since the beginning of his solo career at the tender age of 13, Michael Jackson has won over millions of fans with his chart-topping hits and iconic dance moves. One of the most globally famous pop sensations in history, Michael Jackson's likeliness is instantly recognizable, and his impact on pop music, immeasurable. Celebrate the extraordinary life and career of The King of Pop with this striking wall calendar.

Classic square format. Updated style. Our square 16-month wall calendars include 13 stunning images and even clearer grids and text. Each of these 12" x 12" calendars features an opening spread with a beautiful four-month (September-December 2019) calendar to plan the last four months of the year and rev up for 2020. Filled with an abundance of holidays, each month’s grid is large enough for daily tasks and appointments.

Specifications
Publisher: Brown Trout
EAN: 9781975412012
Guide price: 13,5 €

Order the calendar here.

Source: Brown Trout / Billie Jean


Closest Thing To A Michael Jackson Concert Is Returning To Weymouth. 24-07-'19

Navi GoldA Popular Michael Jackson tribute act is making a return visit to Weymouth.

Navi, said to be the world’s number one Michael Jackson tribute artist, will be moonwalking the night away at Weymouth Pavilion on Sunday, August 4.

King Of Pop – The Legend Continues stars tribute Navi, who was hired by Michael Jackson himself as the star's official body double. With a live band and dancers, the production features all of Jackson’s mega-hits in a fast-paced, two-hour show featuring hits like 'Thriller', 'Billie Jean' and 'Smooth Criminal'.

Navi is widely regarded as the leading and most successful Michael Jackson tribute artist on the planet - a claim that is backed up by a list of achievements chalked up in a career spanning three decades.

As well as working for Michael as his official body double, the star also booked Navi to performed at two of his lavish birthday parties in New York and Los Angeles. Michael not only applauded Navi for his renditions of 'Smooth Criminal' and 'Billie Jean', but also went on to give him a standing ovation (captured live on film by local news crew).

Talking about his relationship with the star, Navi said: "To meet Michael was one thing, but to perform in front of the greatest entertainer of all time and to perform his songs was no easy feat and extremely nerve-wracking."

The next morning, Navi was unexpectedly received an invite from the King Of Pop to visit the star to visit his home, Neverland. Navi spent the day with Michael visiting his cinema, his zoo and even went on a few of the theme park rides – topping the day off with a barbeque on the grounds. “My memories from that day will always be some of my most precious,” said Navi.

Since Michael's death, Navi has continued to work alongside the MJJ Estate and has performed his tribute worldwide in 59 different countries.

Talking about the UK tour, Navi said: “The show is bigger and better than ever before with a few surprises.We know the fans will have a great time celebrating Michael’s music with us.”

*Navi in King Of Pop – The Legend Continues, Sunday, August 4, Weymouth Pavilion. Call the box office for tickets.

Source: Dorset Echo / Billie Jean


A Mini Series Of Documentaries About Fans By A Fan, In 8 Episodes. 24-07-'19

Michael ForeverMichael Jackson fans rarely recognize each other in the various documentaries broadcast regularly on television channels. And few documentaries give them the floor without a second thought.

Alex, a fan since 1983, has decided to make a mini series of documentaries in 8 episodes titled 'Michael Forever'!. Wishing that this mini series could be seen by a maximum of people, he contacted us so that we relay this information.

You can watch the first 2 episodes on You Tube knowing that others are coming soon.

Episode 1

Episode 2

Here is the message that appears in the presentation of the first video:

My documentary was shot in 3 years, during my free time, between January 2016 and May 2019.

8 interviews out of 10, were realized before the diffusion of the film 'Leaving Neverland', in 2019.

After its broadcast, the speakers of my documentary have not changed their mind about Michael Jackson who remains innocent until proven otherwise.

I declare that I do not own the copyright of clips and songs used on this media.

I made and self-produced this film, voluntarily, for a non-profit purpose.

My only goal is that this documentary evening, seen, for free, by the greatest number, on YouTube, on the occasion of the 10 years of the disappearance of Michael Jackson.

I am not trying to monetize this diffusion.

Alex Vidman DLM

Source: MJ France / YouTube / Billie Jean


Kenny Ortega To Be Honored With A Hollywood Walk Of Fame Star. 23-07-'19

Kenny OrtegaKenny Ortega, who worked with Michael Jackson on numerous concerts and directed 'This Is It' movie will receive his own Hollywood Walk of Fame Star on Wednesday 24 July 2019 at 11.30am (PDT).

The famous 'Hocus Pocus' director star will be placed in front of the famed Pantages Theatre in Hollywood, California.

We are so pleased for Kenny and we would like to congratulate him on his massive achievement!

Congratulation Kenny!

Source: Los Angeles Life and Style / MJ Vibe / Billie Jean


Festivals Tour For Jacksons In France And Announcing A New Album. 21-07-'19

The JacksonsOn the occasion of their passage in France in several summer festivals, we learn that the Jacksons, through an interview that Tito granted the Figaro, announce that a new album could be released in late 2019 or early 2020.

After the '2300 Jackson Street' album celebrating its 30th anniversary this year, the band has several times announced the preparation of a new album that has not yet seen the day.

Will this time be the right one? Tito seems to believe it, announcing that it may reveal that the songs are ready and that the band should enter the studio this fall.

For those who would like to see the Jackson brothers this summer, here is the list of places where they will occur:
• Saturday, July 27 at the guitars nights of Beaulieu-Sur-Mer (06)
• Tuesday, August 6th at Monte Carlo Sporting Summer Festival in Monaco
• Sunday 11 August at the Marciac Jazz Festival (32)
• Thursday, August 29 at the Trélazé summer festival (49)

Source: MJ France / Billie Jean


Jermaine JacksonJermaine Jackson Denies Doubting Michael Jackson Innocence. 20-07-'19

Michael Jackson’s brother Jermaine Jackson complained about a UK Sun article about allegations of child molestation against Michael Jackson.

The Sun’s February article, “MJ Paedo Worry Michael Jackson’s bother Jermaine expressed secret fears over superstar’s sex abuse claims in 1993 interview,” reported that despite Jermaine Jackson’s defense of his brother, Jermaine Jackson gave an interview in 1993 saying he had doubts about his brother’s innocence.

Jackson denied the interview, saying he consistently had defended his brother against the allegations. The Sun, however, defended its story as reporting accurately on an article in the public domain, and provided the 1993 article as evidence. Regardless, Jackson denied he made the comments and called the 1993 article “dubious.”

Despite Jackson’s denials, IPSO ruled that the article accurately reported on the 1993 interview and contextualized that it was an old interview, and not his current position.

“By reporting these comments, the article did not contain the suggestion that this was a position which the complainant currently held; the article made clear that the complainant had expressed strong support of his brother in 1993, and more recently,” IPSO reported. “The newspaper had taken care to report the historic comments contained in the interview accurately, and no misleading impression was given of the content of the article published in 1993, such as would require correction.”

iMediaEthics has written to the Sun. We’ve also written to Jackson’s representatives to ask if he is satisfied with the process and has complained about any other news outlets’ reporting on this matter.

Source: imedia Ethics / Billie Jean


Statement From The Estate Of Michael Jackson About Emmy Nominations. 20-07-'19

The Estate Of Michael Jackson
The Estate Of Michael Jackson

We have heard from many fans in connection with the recent announcement of Emmy nominations in the US. We share your outrage and disappointment that the disgraceful one-sided smear 'Leaving Neverland' was nominated for potential Creative Arts Emmys by the Television Academy.

As you know, the Estate has spent years and considerable sums defending Michael and his estate against false allegations made by the two subjects of 'Leaving Neverland'. When those individuals took their case to HBO having thus far failed in court, we wasted no time in filing a major lawsuit at considerable time and expense against HBO that remains active, attracted worldwide attention and which HBO has taken very seriously.

We also participated in public seminars highlighting the egregious bias of 'Leaving Neverland' – at both Harvard and UCLA – which were covered extensively in the media. We have issued numerous public statements defending Michael, calling into question the motivations not only of the participants in the film but also the motivations of those who would choose to support the discredited liars and filmmaker who spread uncorroborated, unsubstantiated claims against a man who is no longer here to defend himself.

As we have indicated in prior statements, there are and will continue to be things that we do behind the scenes (including support offered to Taj Jackson), most of which will never become public. We recognize that in our unique position we must be thoughtful in whatever actions we take given that we are dealing with a network, filmmaker, plaintiffs’ attorneys and, in some cases, hostile media who are looking to seize on anything we do to advance their agendas and create publicity for this film. While we share the anger those who love Michael feel, we nonetheless must continue to balance our passion to speak out, against what best serves Michael’s legacy and not give those who wish to destroy him the excuse and opportunity they are looking for to try to further denigrate him. We know this is not what the fans want either.

As far as these specific Emmy nominations are concerned, as you may have noticed the media has actually given very little attention to them. So while we can confirm that we informed the Academy of our views regarding the absurdity of nominating for any award four hours of propaganda built on provable lies, it is important to keep in mind that, while not emotionally satisfying to restrain ourselves from speaking out publicly, we don’t want to do anything to effectively aid HBO, the filmmaker and the subjects of the film in seeking to promote this movie in any way. That includes aiding this and other self-serving campaigns they undertake for potential awards nobody will even remember who won a year or two from now.

After screening at Sundance and then playing on HBO, several lies were exposed in 'Leaving Neverland'. The Estate, fans, foreign and African American media and even everyday viewers found holes in the film exposing its appalling lack of credibility and journalistic integrity. Our best course is to continue to shed light on an arrogant director who violated every basic journalistic standard of fairness in making his movie. No self-serving “award” will ever validate his decision to avoid anyone with a counterpoint of view, nor will it ever justify his inexcusable failure to fact check, fill the gaping holes of his timeline or absolve him for recklessly disparaging the reputations of Michael Jackson and others.

HBO’s reprehensible participation in disparaging Michael’s reputation by financing and supporting this infomercial has been frustrating for all of us over the last several months. But we are committed to protecting and preserving Michael’s incredible legacy. HBO and the film’s director were hoping they would mute Michael Jackson. They didn’t. No nominations or potential awards will change that.

We also want to take this opportunity to thank the fans for all of the time, energy and, in some cases, money you have invested in the defense of Michael. You can be assured that we are aware of those efforts and genuinely appreciate everything you do to support Michael and his legacy.

Source: The Estate Of Michael Jackson / Billie Jean


Michael Jackson Documentary 'Leaving Neverland' Receives 5 Emmy Nominations. 16-07-'19

Leaving NeverlandThe explosive and controversial Michael Jackson documentary 'Leaving Neverland' is among this year’s list of Emmy nominees.

The HBO documentary nabbed five nominations, including outstanding directing for a documentary/nonfiction program; outstanding documentary or nonfiction special; outstanding picture editing for a nonfiction program; outstanding sound editing for a nonfiction program; and outstanding sound mixing for a nonfiction program.

In the film, two men — Wade Robson and James Safechuck — allege that the late music icon sexually abused them when they were children. The Jackson estate has sued HBO and slammed the documentary, calling it “another rehash of dated and discredited allegations.”

'Leaving Neverland' premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in January. In the documentary, both Robson, 36, and Safechuck, 40, detail their alleged inappropriate experiences with Jackson.

The Jackson estate came out swinging before 'Leaving Neverland' even premiered at Sundance.

“This is yet another lurid production in an outrageous and pathetic attempt to exploit and cash in on Michael Jackson,” the Jackson estate said in a statement in January.

In late February, two co-executors of Jackson’s estate and Optimum Productions sued HBO and its parent company, Time Warner, for $100 million, claiming that airing the two-part film would violate a non-disparagement clause, according to court documents obtained by PEOPLE. “Michael Jackson is innocent. Period,” the lawsuit says in part.

In a statement obtained by PEOPLE, HBO responded: “Despite the desperate lengths taken to undermine the film, our plans remain unchanged. HBO will move forward with the airing of 'Leaving Neverland'. … This will allow everyone the opportunity to assess the film and the claims in it for themselves.”

Source: Yahoo / Billie Jean


The Estate Of Michael Jackson
The Estate Of Michael Jackson

HBO 'Neverland' Arbitration Row Paused In Anti-SLAPP Effort. 16-07-'19

A California federal judge on Monday (July 15) held back on deciding whether the Estate of Michael Jackson’s breach of contract suit over HBO’s 'Leaving Neverland' documentary should go to arbitration right away, instead allowing HBO to address First Amendment issues underlying the allegations it disparaged Jackson’s character.

At a hearing in downtown Los Angeles, U.S. District Judge George H. Wu entertained a short oral argument over the estate’s motion to compel arbitration regarding a 1992 agreement between HBO and the estate before deciding he would not rule on the matter without first giving the network a chance to file an anti-SLAPP motion, which is used to guard against lawsuits that are intended to impede free speech.

HBO’s attorney, Theodore J. Boutrous Jr. of Gibson Dunn & Crutcher LLP, told Judge Wu there was “no question” that 'Leaving Neverland' is a documentary of public concern.

“It’s clear it’s fully protected speech,” Boutrous said.

But the estate’s attorney, Jonathan P. Steinsapir of Kinsella Weitzman Iser Kump & Aldisert LLP, argued that federal court rules dictate a deadline for filing anti-SLAPP motions and that it doesn’t apply in relation to motions to compel arbitration.

“Giving them a way out at this point is just not fair,” Steinsapir said.

But Judge Wu said there are SLAPP concerns in the allegations and that he would give HBO a chance to file an anti-SLAPP motion.

In the $100 million suit against HBO, filed in February, the late singer’s estate claims HBO broke an agreement permitting it to use footage from Jackson’s Dangerous World Tour in exchange for monetary and non monetary considerations, including a promise from HBO not to “disparage” the singer.

The estate alleges the documentary has harmed Jackson’s legacy.

In May, Judge Wu denied the Jackson estate’s bid to compel arbitration or remand the case to state court, finding that the language of the 1992 agreement does not indicate that any disputes should be handled only by state court. He also ruled that he should be the one to make a determination on arbitration.

But Judge Wu did allow for supplemental briefing on arbitration part of the motion ahead of Monday’s hearing.

A hearing for HBO’s anti-SLAPP motion was set for Sept. 16.

“As we said in our papers and at today’s argument, we believe there is no legal basis for the estate’s petition and we look forward to presenting further arguments to the court,” an HBO representative told on Monday.

A representative for Jackson’s estate did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Michael Jackson’s estate is represented by Howard Weitzman, Jonathan P. Steinsapir and Zachary T. Elsea of Kinsella Weitzman Iser Kump & Aldisert LLP and Bryan J. Freedman of Freedman & Taitelman LLP.

HBO is represented by Daniel M. Petrocelli and Drew E. Breuder of O’Melveny & Myers LLP and Theodore J. Boutrous Jr. and Nathaniel L. Bach of Gibson Dunn & Crutcher LLP.

The case is Optimum Productions et al. v. Home Box Office et al., case number 2:19-cv-01862, in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California.

Source: Law360 / Billie Jean

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