Streisand Clarifies Comments On Michael Jackson Allegations ‘I Am Profoundly Sorry’

Barbra Streisand

Earlier this week, Barbra Streisand raised eyebrows with comments to the Times of London regarding Michael Jackson and the new documentary Leaving Neverland, which details allegations of sexual abuse of children by the late King of Pop.

Streisand has now released a statement clarifying the comments.

Via Variety:

“To be crystal clear, there is no situation or circumstance where it is OK for the innocence of children to be taken advantage of by anyone. The stories these two young men shared were painful to hear, and I feel nothing but sympathy for them. The single most important role of being a parent is to protect their children. It’s clear that the parents of the two young men were also victimized and seduced by fame and fantasy.”

La Streisand added on her Instagram:

“I am profoundly sorry for any pain or misunderstanding I caused by not choosing my words more carefully about Michael Jackson and his victims, because the words as printed do not reflect my true feelings. I didn’t mean to dismiss the trauma these boys experienced in any way.”

In the Times of London interview, after being asked her thoughts on the documentary, the EGOT-winner said:

“It’s a combination of feelings. I feel bad for the children. I feel bad for him. I blame, I guess, the parents, who would allow their children to sleep with him. Why would Michael need these little children dressed like him and in the shows and the dancing and the hats?”

“His sexual needs were his sexual needs,” she added. “Coming from whatever childhood he has or whatever DNA he has.”

“You can say ‘molested,’ but those children, as you heard them say [the grown-up Robson and Safechuk], they were thrilled to be there. They both married and they both have children, so it didn’t kill them.”

News Round-Up: March 16, 2019

Some news items you might have missed:

• Finally, a public bathroom sign (above) that makes sense.

• The Advocate takes a look at newly-announced presidential candidate Beto O’Rourke’s history on LGBTQ issues.

• GOP Sen. Ted Cruz has been fined $35,000 for failing to disclose $1 million in campaign funds.

• Michael Jackson fans are suing his alleged victims for taking part in the recent HBO documentary Leaving Neverland for sullying the memory of the pop star.

• Having surpassed over 65,000 donors, out White House hopeful Pete Buttigieg has qualified for the 2020 Democratic presidential debates.

• Indie singer/songwriter/producer Lauv (nominated for “Best New Pop Artist at the 2019 iHeart Radio Music Awards) drops his stripped-down video of hit single “i’m so tired…” with Troye Sivan.

Lauv said on the stripped performance, “Troye and I went to Henson Recording Studios to make this acoustic version of ‘i’m so tired…’ and we ended up including the infamous bridge. Also, Troye is an angel…go check it out and enjoy.”

Troye added, “I’ve had the insane joy of playing this song live now for the last few weeks and have never felt a ground swell like this for a song I’m on before. So excited to put out this acoustic version of ‘i’m so tired…’ with Lauv!”

HBO Releases Trailer For Upcoming Michael Jackson Documentary ‘Leaving Neverland’

(promo image via HBO)

HBO has released the trailer for the upcoming Michael Jackson documentary, Leaving Neverland.

The two-part, four-hour documentary explores the separate (but similar) allegations of two men who were both befriended as children by Michael Jackson.

James Safechuck (who met Jackson when he was ten years old) and Wade Robson (who met the singer at age five) both allege they experienced numerous incidents of sexual abuse by Jackson.

In 2005, Robson testified in Jackson’s defense during the singer’s criminal trial saying he had stayed at the Neverland Ranch more than 20 times – usually sleeping in Jackson’s room – and Jackson never sexually abused him.

But in 2013, years after Jackson’s death, he changed his story and sued the Jackson estate for what he described as seven years of molestation. The judge in that case dismissed the lawsuit saying the estate “couldn’t be held responsible for Robson’s exposure to Jackson.”

Safechuck filed a complaint in 2016 alleging Jackson had sex with him “hundreds” of times when he was a boy. That case was also dismissed.

Directed by Dan Reed, the film features in-depth interviews with both men as well as family members.

According to The Guardian, the Jackson estate dispatched a ten-page letter to HBO’s CEO denying the allegations and denouncing Reed for not interviewing anyone from Jackson’s family or legal team.

Robson, who became a successful choreographer in the 2000s for acts like Britney Spears and *NSYNC, says in the trailer that Jackson “told me if they ever found out what we were doing, he and I would go to jail for the rest of our lives.”

“I want to be able to speak the truth as loud as I had to speak the lie for so long,” added Robson.

“Secrets will eat you up,” Safechuck tells the camera. “You feel so alone.”

The comments on the YouTube page for the trailer are overwhelmingly negative about the film and the allegations with the ‘Dislikes’ outweighing the ‘Likes’ 5 to 1.

Part one of Leaving Neverland airs Sunday, March 3, on HBO, with the second part following on Monday, March 4.

Watch the trailer below.

Michael Jackson Documentary ‘Leaving Neverland’ Described As ‘Disturbing’

Michael Jackson (image via Flickr/Francesco)

Leaving Neverland, the new four-hour documentary that focuses on two alleged cases of sexual abuse by pop star Michael Jackson, debuted last night at the Sundance Film Festival.

From People:

The emotional film was only halfway through when viewers began sharing their thoughts on the “sickening” claims from James Safechuck and Wade Robson, both of whom say they endured years of Jackson’s inappropriate behaviors and manipulation.

“It’s halftime at the four-hour Michael Jackson doc and I’m already gonna need 400 showers to ever feel clean again. #Sundance” David Ehrlich, a Senior Film Critic at Indie Wire, tweeted after the doc’s first two hours.

“On a 10-min break halfway through Sundance’s 4-hour Michael Jackson child sex abuse documentary,” wrote Kevin Fallon, Senior Entertainment Reporter at The Daily Beast.

“Whatever you thought you knew or were aware of, the content of this is more disturbing than you could imagine. And again, we’re only halfway through.”

In response, fans argued back that there was “no evidence” and that people “never tried to understand Michael and see who he really was.”

“You are falling for the wrong stuff & you are being played and you will see that pretty soon! Wait on it,” wrote one fan.

Robson claims he first met Jackson at the age of 5 in his native Australia.

Two years later, his family was invited to stay at Jackson’s Neverland Ranch home in California, where he claims he slept in Jackson’s bed and said he was first sexually abused by him.

Robson says the abuse went on for seven years and ended because he grew out of an age that Jackson was interested in.

However, Robson testified as a witness for Jackson’s defense during a sexual abuse trial in 2005 where the pop star was acquitted of child molestation charges.

Safechuck claimed in 2014 that he was sexually abused by the icon when he was 10 years old after appearing in a Pepsi commercial with him.

Safechuck says that his relationship with Jackson culminated in joining Jackson on his Bad tour, and it was then that the alleged sexual abuse began.

The Jackson estate issued a statement to People in advance of the premiere of Leaving Neverland, which read:

“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 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.”

Jackson died in 2009 at the age of 50 in his L.A. mansion.

Leaving Neverland premieres on HBO this spring.

Sony Music Admits Tracks On Posthumous Michael Jackson Album Weren’t Michael

The ‘King of Pop’ – Michael Jackson

You may recall that back in 2010, in the aftermath of pop superstar Michael Jackson’s death, Epic Records and Sony Music released a posthumous album titled, Michael.

The album debuted at #3 on the Billboard 200 chart with respectable first-week sales of 228,000 units.

But, at the time, some fans weren’t convinced all of the lead vocals on the tracks were recorded by the ‘King of Pop,’ including Jackson’s mother.

And so it came to be that in 2014, Jackson fan Vera Serova filed a Class Action lawsuit against Jackson’s longtime friend Eddie Cascio and Angelikson Productions LLC alleging some of the songs were not voiced by Jackson.

A co-writer on twelve of the songs, James Porte, was also named in the suit.

Serova detailed what she called “inconsistencies” and even brought in a forensic audiologist, Dr. George Papcun, who wrote up a whopping 41-page report indicating three songs – ‘Breaking News’, ‘Keep Your Head Up’ and ‘Monster’ – were not recorded by Jackson.

Among some of the issues were the absence of the singer’s iconic finger snaps and foot taps.

In defending itself, Sony called on Porte and Cascio to provide alternate takes of the songs by Jackson. But the duo claimed all the other takes had been deleted.

Who deletes actual, raw recordings of Michael Jackson?

It turns out – nobody.

Eventually, in December 2016, even Sony got a sense that perhaps the vocals weren’t authentic.

In court, the lawyer for Jackson’s estate and Sony attempted to put the blame on James and Eddie “failed to disclose to Sony or the Estate that Michael Jackson did not provide the lead vocals”

The judge wasn’t having it and ruled against them.

Fast forward to August 21, 2018, where the California Court of Appeal heard oral arguments where Sony Music admitted that the three songs ‘Breaking News’, ‘Keep Your Head Up’ and ‘Monster’ featuring 50 Cent was indeed performed by an impersonator, Jason Malachi. and not Michael Jackson.

According to EDM.com, the 3 judges on the panel have 90 days to decide the matter.

#wow

(h/t EDM.com)

Las Vegas: Cast of “Michael Jackson ONE” gives sexy Vegas treatment to “A Place With No Name”

Dancers from the cast of  Michael Jackson ONE in Las Vegas celebrate the release of single number two – “A Place With No Name” – from Michael’s album XSCAPE.

With a nod to America’s “A Horse With No Name” and the official video for “A Place With No Name,” the gorgeous and creative cast takes you on a journey through the Nevada desert to the oasis that is Michael Jackson ONE.

Michael Jackson ONE, currently in long-term residence at Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas, is easily one of my favorite shows to hit the Strip.  With stunning choreography and lighting, the show utilizes Jackson’s music perfectly.

Be sure and catch a performance of the show on your next visit to Las Vegas; and pick up your copy of XSCAPE on iTunes or Amazon.

Music Video: Michael Jackson “A Place With No Name”

A new music video for “A Place With No Name” from Michael Jackson’s posthumous Xscape album, a collection of previously unreleased Michael Jackson songs.

The album is produced and curated by Epic Records Chairman and CEO L.A. Reid, who retooled the production to add a fresh, contemporary sound that retains Jackson’s essence and integrity. It’s a process Reid calls “con temporizing.”

Directed by Samuel Bayer, the video for “A Place With No Name” is reminiscent of the 1991 video for “In The Closet,” utilizing outtakes and repurposed footage from that video.

Michael Jackson hologram at Billboard Music Awards: “Slave to the Rhythm”

At the Billboard Music Awards last night, the audience experienced a hologram of Michael Jackson performing a track from the new MJ album “Xscape.”

With live dancers, the holographic Michael Jackson displayed the moves we all came to know over the course of his phenomenal career. But some found the idea of “reconstituting” the deceased pop icon a bit creepy.

The fact that this is the night’s most talked about performance says something in itself about the state of award shows today.

What do you think? Creepy or cool?


Music video: Michael Jackson & Justin Timberlake “Love Never Felt So Good”

New video for the first single “Love Never Felt So Good” from the new Michael Jackson album XSCAPE.

The video cuts focus on Michael Jackson’s famous dance moves. Timberlake wisely avoids recreating the steps, but he drops some of the Jackson style on us.

You can definitely imagine this song being from Jackson’s Off The Wall era. The video context helps the song, in my opinion.

XSCAPE is an album of previously unreleased Michael Jackson songs. The album is produced and curated by Epic Records Chairman and CEO L.A. Reid, who retooled the production to add a fresh, contemporary sound that retains Jackson’s essence and integrity. It’s a process Reid calls “contemporizing.”