Jay-Z, Lady Gaga and many other stars turned down new R. Kelly documentary

However, John Legend did agree to be interviewed

Jay-Z, Lady Gaga and many other stars turned down requests to appear in the new R. Kelly documentary Surviving R. Kelly, the series producer has revealed.

The three-part series on Lifetime premieres in the US tonight (January 3). The show traces allegations that Kelly sexually abused women and girls. Kelly’s ex-wife Andrea Kelly and his former girlfriend Kitti Jones are among 50 interviewees who featured in the series, with that list also including John Legend and R&B artist Sparkle.

Executive producer dream hampton has now claimed that Erykah Badu, Questlove, Mary J. Blige, Lil’ Kim, Celine Dion and comedian Dave Chappelle also refused to appear in Surviving R. Kelly.


Their contribution was specifically requested for the documentary as they have all worked with Kelly in the past.

R Kelly documentary
R. Kelly performs live in 2013

Speaking to the Detroit Free Press, dream hampton said: “When it comes to celebrities, It was incredibly difficult to get people who had collaborated (artistically) with Kelly to come forward.

“We asked Lady Gaga. We asked Erykah Badu. We asked Celine Dion. We asked Jay-Z. We asked Dave Chappelle. [They’re] people who have been critical of him. That makes John Legend even more of a hero for me.”

The producer also spoke about the women who have come forward to talk about their experiences.

“They’re everything, these women. We call them survivors. They’re so brave.  Their stories are important, and they have every right to share them. Many of them have said they (want) to prevent someone else from falling into (such situations).


“There are no big paychecks for these women. We can’t pay them to be in a documentary. There are no endorsement deals. This kind of exposure doesn’t lead to some great something. I admire them so much and have all the respect in the world for them.”

Kelly has consistently denied any wrongdoing and was acquitted in the 2008 trial. In his song ‘I Admit’, released earlier this year, he admitted infidelity but denied all allegations of paedophilia and non-consensual sex.

A screening of Surviving R.Kelly was recently shut down in New York after a gun threat was received at the venue.


The Best Songs Of The Decade: The 2010s

Here – after much debate – are the 100 very best songs of 2010s

The Best Albums of The Decade: The 2010s

Here it is: the ultimate guide to the 100 essential albums of the 2010s, picked, ranked and dissected by NME experts

Allie X: The weird pop dynamo out to slay the industry dinosaurs

We speak to the alt-hero about her upcoming album and working with Troye Sivan