Bohemian Rhapsody producer Graham King’s upcoming Michael Jackson biopic has gained momentum in recent weeks, with Antoine Fuqua tapped to direct and the pop star’s nephew Jafaar Jackson cast. The project began nearly four years after Dan Reed’s HBO documentary Leaving Neverland shed new light on child molestation allegations against Jackson. But while the documentary has given many fans a new perspective on Jackson, the show’s director says he still believes the allegations are not being taken seriously enough.
In a new op-ed The guardianReed reiterated his criticism of Jackson and why he still believes the singer is guilty despite being acquitted in court.
“The most harrowing insight in ‘Leaving Neverland,’ and the most painful for any parent to accept, is that as part of the nurturing process, the predator falls in love with the child and draws him into a kind of guilty complicity. in the abuse,” Reed wrote. “So victims of child sexual abuse, shocking to the uninitiated, cover up and protect their abusers for years or decades. That’s why Robson became a defense witness in the 2005 child sexual abuse trial against Jackson and agreed to his acquittal. The jury believed Robson and found the singer not guilty. Now he admits he lied in court to protect his mentor and abuser.”
Reed went on to criticize the media for its coverage of the project and for what he believed to be downplaying of the allegations.
“The total lack of outrage accompanying the film’s announcement tells us that Jackson’s seduction is still a living force operating from beyond the grave,” he wrote. “It seems that the press, his fans and the huge older demographic who grew up loving Jackson are willing to put aside his unhealthy relationship with kids and just get into the music.”
Reed concluded his work by writing: “I say to the filmmakers, how are you going to represent the moment when Jackson, a grown man in his thirties, takes a child by the hand and leads him into that bedroom? How will you depict the following events? By bypassing Jackson’s penchant for sleeping with young boys, she sends a message to millions of survivors of child sexual abuse. This is the message: if a pedophile is rich and popular enough, society will forgive him.”