“If the Michael Jackson legend is destroyed by this, the person responsible is Michael Jackson — no one else.”
The two-part film focuses on testimony by Wade Robson, 36, and James Safechuck, 41, who both claim that Michael Jackson sexually abused them when they were children. The documentary divided opinion when it premiered in the UK earlier this month, with fans taking to the streets of London to protest it being broadcast while radio stations around the world have since banned Jackson’s songs.
While numerous public figures have been either defending or condemning Jackson in the wake of the film, now producer and documentary maker Rudi Dolezal who worked with Jackson for a number of years from his 1992 ‘Dangerous’ tour onwards has said that the ‘Thriller’ singer was “a predator”.
Speaking to PageSix about Leaving Neverland, Dolezal said: “I believe almost every word. It’s brilliant work.”
“Nobody would stop Michael,” he continued. “It’s hard to believe an icon is a con.”
Dolezal also spoke of how Michael’s father Joe Jackson had put him through a traumatic childhood, including the abusive way he taught him to dance quicker.
“He put the four-year-old on a hot stovetop barefoot,” Dolezal said. “The way he told it, he was not regretting it. I felt really sorry for Michael. He hated his father.”
He added: “If the Michael Jackson legend is destroyed by this, the person responsible is Michael Jackson — no one else.”
Yesterday, Leaving Neverland director Dan Reed denied claims from the lawyer who represented Jackson during his 2005 trial for child molestation that footage included in the controversial documentary was taken “out of context.”
Elsewhere, Jackson’s niece Brandi claimed that the accusers were “liars” and “motivated by money”, while Aaron Carter also questioned their motives and said that they were “stomping on a legend’s grave“. This comes after Juice WRLD defended the ‘Thriller’ star urging people to “let the legend rest“, while Louis Theroux said that anyone still defending Jackson was being “wilfully blind“.
Earlier this month, Jackson’s nephew Taj confirmed to NME that he was working on a counter-documentary to dispute the claims made in Leaving Neverland. Jackson’s fans last week announced their plans to sue Wade Robson and James Safechuck for “sullying” Jackson’s memory.
Jackson denied any wrongdoing before he died in 2009.