Episode 094 – Harrison Funk Special

This week, just as The MJCast was about to release a surprise episode between seasons, news broke that the Sundance Film Festival was preparing to screen a documentary smearing Michael Jackson as a child molester.

As shockwaves rippled through the fan community and listeners sprang into action, it seemed to be an inappropriate time to release the episode.

The show’s special guest was to be Harrison Funk, renowned entertainment, fashion, and advertising photographer best known for being Michael Jackson’s personal photographer from the early 1980s through the mid-2000s. The interview with Funk had been recorded months ago, and The MJCast team had kept it in the can, ready to release as a special New Year treat for listeners. 

But, upon re-visiting the interview in light of this week’s horrifying news, the timing could hardly be more apt. Harrison spends a great deal of time during his conversation with Jamon Bull and Charles Thomson discussing the false abuse allegations which plagued Michael from 1993 onwards. He speaks movingly about the physical and psychological toll the allegations took on his friend, and how those who loved Michael rallied around him, but watched helplessly as his life and his health slowly fell apart until his eventual death in 2009.
 
As the media prepares to stick the knife into Michael one more time and give it a sharp twist, this interview with one of Michael’s closest friends makes for a sobering listen.

In addition to the allegations, Harrison discusses the kind of man Michael really was, not the lie Dan Reed, Wade Robson and Sundance are going to try and sell the world. The MJCast and Harrison explore stories around Michael’s process as a live musician, the Victory Tour, the Bad era, Harrison’s love of photography, his fascinating observations as he photographed Teddy Riley​ producing Cascio tracks in the studio and SO much more!

This episode of The MJCast is dedicated to Friend of the Show and fellow MJ podcaster Jordan King of King Jordan Radio, who recently and tragically passed away. We will always be missing you, Jordan.

We hope this episode brings some positivity and truth to an otherwise dark time for MJFam.

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If you have any thoughts, opinions, or feedback on this Michael Jackson podcast episode, we’d love to hear from you. Contact us at themjcast@icloud.com or find the links to our many social networks on www.themjcast.comKeep Michaeling!

Stop Leaving Neverland Now

The 2019 Sundance Film Festival is set to premiere Leaving Neverland later this month. The film is a new two-part 233 minute Dan Reed documentary, focusing on the alleged sexual abuse of Wade Robson and James Safechuck by Michael Jackson.

Following initial confusion around who the subjects of the documentary might be, the website for Reed’s Amos Pictures clearly shows a photo with Jackson and Robson, who testified in Michael Jackson’s 2005 criminal trial as a defence witness, and then later sued Michael Jackson’s Estate claiming he was molested after-all, only to have his case thrown out in 2017. 

A representative for Michael Jackson’s Estate has commented “This is yet another lurid production in an outrageous and pathetic attempt to exploit and cash in on Michael Jackson. Wade Robson and James Safechuck [who was Jackson’s companion as a child and sued Jackson’s estate over sexual abuse claims] have both testified under oath that Michael never did anything inappropriate toward them. Safechuck and Robson, the latter a self-proclaimed ‘master of deception,’ filed lawsuits against Michael’s estate, asking for millions of dollars. Both lawsuits were dismissed. This so-called ‘documentary’ is just another rehash of dated and discredited allegations.  It’s baffling why any credible filmmaker would involve himself with this project.”

Join with us in demanding that this production does not go ahead. We must demand that the Michael Jackson estate pursues legal action and shuts this documentary down.

Michael Jackson Estate Co-Executors
John Branca (johnb@ziffrenlaw.com)
John McClain (jmcclain2004@aol.com)

Michael Jackson Estate Attorney
Howard Weitzman (hweitzman@kwikalaw.com)

For sample email text, please feel free to personalise the below.

Dear Sirs,
 
I am writing to implore you to take immediate legal action over a new film accusing Michael Jackson of molesting two boys.

Sundance Film Festival has announced plans to screen a film titled Leaving Neverland, in which Wade Robson and James Safechuck will accuse Michael Jackson of grooming and molesting them over a years-long period. 
These two men, as you know, were behind a lawsuit which the Estate successfully had thrown out of court in 2017.

It goes without saying that in the wake of the #MeToo movement and the move towards trial by media over allegations against celebrities, this film poses the most existential threat to Michael Jackson’s reputation and legacy since his death in 2009.

For roughly the last five years, the Estate has used its vast resources to mount legal challenge after legal challenge to frustrate and delay a lawsuit by Vera Serova over the inclusion of three fake songs on a posthumous album. It has also used its clout to suppress a positive documentary about Michael Jackson’s final photo shoots.

So fans around the world are now questioning why the Estate is not using its power and resources to try to block the release of this extremely dangerous film, which has the potential to completely decimate Michael Jackson’s reputation forever.

In 2017, a campaign by Michael Jackson’s family and fans successfully blocked the release of a film in which Michael Jackson was to be portrayed in a demeaning way by the white actor Joseph Fiennes.

That film was merely insensitive. This film could destroy Michael Jackson’s reputation forever. The Michael Jackson fan community therefore calls upon you to employ every legal resource and avenue available to you to frustrate, impede and sabotage this film in any and every conceivable way. 

Sincerely,

[Insert name here]

Jamon Bull