Several radio stations from around the world have reportedly stopped playing Michael Jackson’s music following the release of the documentary ‘Leaving Neverland’.
Radio stations from around the world have banned the King Of Pop’s music following the release of the four-hour documentary Leaving Neverland as it revealed disturbing allegations of child $exual Aḅuse at the hands of the late music star. The two-part film reveals allegations from two men who claim they were $exually Aḅused by the singer when they were children, according to CNN. New Zealand’s public broadcaster RNZ said they don’t play Michael Jackson’s music as part of their regular rotation. Several competitor organizations, including MediaWorks ( who own nine major commercial stations in the country), also confirmed they’ve stopped playing Jackson’s music from all their stations “a reflection of our audiences and their preferences.”
Three major stations in Canada have also stopped playing Jackson’s music. Cogeco Media owns three large stations and 23 smaller stations in the country. They told Variety, “We are attentive to the comments of our listeners, and the documentary released on Sunday evening created reactions. We prefer to observe the situation by removing the songs from our stations, for the time being.”
Other large broadcasters, including BBC2 Radio, have reportedly banned Michael Jackson’s music, though a representative for the station told Variety that BBC does not ban artists. “We consider each piece of music on its merits and decisions on what we play on different networks are always made with relevant audiences and context in mind.” The documentary was aired on HBO on Sunday, though it premiered at Sundance Film Festival.
In the documentary, James Safechuck and Wade Robson, two men who claim to have worked with Jackson when they were boys spoke about the nature of their relationship with him. They claim it developed over the years, and that the Thriller singer was the one who initiated $exual interactions with them and other boys repeatedly. The allegations made against him ranged from Jackson staging a mock wedding ceremony with Safechuck and to him sleeping in the same bed as the boys!
According to CNN, Oprah Winfrey interviewed the accusers Wade Robson and James Safechuck, where she explained her interest in the documentary was because it managed to convey the nature of child $exual Aḅuse. “This is a moment in time that allows us to see this societal corruption. It’s like a scourge on humanity. If it gets you, our audience, to see how it happens, then some good would have come of it,” she said.
Winfrey asked Robson and Safechuck if they understood the nature of the relationship as they were children, where Jackson was allegedly ‘grooming’ them. “I had no understanding that what Michael did to me $exually was Aḅuse. I had no concept of it being that,” said Robson. Winfrey then asked them why they continued to associate with Jackson, to which Robson replied, “The grooming had started long before we ever met.”
Time reported that Michael Jackson’s estate sued HBO over the documentary saying the film violates a contract signed in 1992. The lawsuit alleges that by co-producing and airing the documentary, the cable channel is breaching a deal to not disparage the singer. According to the contract, the cable channel can air Michael Jackson in Concert in Bucharest: The Dangerous Tour and use it in such a way that HBO would never belittle Jackson in the future, but the documentary claims Jackson molested children on the same tour the concert footage came from.
A source told People that Michael Jackson’s daughter Paris Jackson opened up about how she ‘hasn’t seen’ the documentary and that she’s standing by her late father. She tweeted: I actually haven’t made any statements yet, especially regarding how it affects my work life. you guys are reaching a bit. at least this wasn’t a disgusting and attacking article though. During an interview with the Rolling Stones Magazine, Paris Jackson admitted her ‘dad would cry to her at night’. “Picture your parent crying to you about the world hating him for something he didn’t do. And for me, he was the only thing that mattered. To see my entire world in pain, I started to hate the world because of what they were doing to him. I’m like, ‘How can people be so mean?’ she said.
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