mayjailer (mayjailer) wrote in ohnotheydidnt,
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ohnotheydidnt

'Leaving Neverland' director talks Jackson estate "pseudofacts" and more in new interview


Leaving Neverland director Dan Reed recently gave an interview to Kate Casey for her podcast Reality Life with Kate Casey, in which he shed further light on the making of his polarizing documentary and attempted to put all those concerned for subject James Safechuck (pictured above with Michael Jackson, year unknown) at ease.

• Reed was initially interested in conducting interviews with Jordan Chandler, who accused Michael Jackson of child sexual-abuse in 1993, and Gavin Arvizo, whose allegations of molestation by Jackson were the center of a 2004-2005 criminal trial. After failing to make contact with Chandler, who is said to have been given a new identity after being legally emancipated from his parents at 14, and receiving no response to a "sincere letter" written to Arvizo, he decided to focus on the parallels between Wade Robson and Safechuck's stories.*

Viewing his film in hindsight, Reed wishes he had indicated to viewers that by the time of his interviews with Safechuck and his mother, Stephanie, Safechuck's father had succumbed to an illness that is briefly mentioned onscreen. Only interviewing the two men's mothers was not a creative decision (Robson's father, Dennis, committed suicide in 2002).

• Reed dismisses claims made by Jackson's estate (and oft-repeated by his supporters) that Robson "begged for" but was denied the chance to choreograph a posthumous Jackson Cirque du Soleil show as "bogus": "In fact Wade is the party that withdrew from that agreement. I've seen emails in which he withdraws which postdate all the other email correspondence he had [regarding the show]... It was his decision to pull out, and they were trying to keep him in."

• When Casey expresses feeling worried for Safechuck upon viewing the documentary and Oprah Winfrey's post-show special After Neverland, Reed reveals that he's received "quite a few emails" articulating similar sentiments, and goes on to say, "James is in a pretty good place. When he did the interview back in February 2017 he was perhaps more fragile, definitely more fragile than he is now. He has been through a lot, but he's in a great place now. He's going to be in therapy for the rest of his life. He knows that, but he is strong."

• While many CSA survivors have come forward to share their gratitude and stories with Reed, Safechuck, and Robson, no other "credible victims" of Jackson have made contact since the airing of the documentary.

* Prior to filming, Reed had dinner with Jason Fracia, the son of one of Jackson's former housekeepers who testified under oath in 2005 that he was molested by the singer. While Francia maintained he was victimized by Jackson, he ultimately chose not to tell his story on camera.

You can listen to the full 36-minute interview at the source
Tags: film - documentary, film director, michael jackson / jackson family, sensitive content, sexual misconduct
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