Michael Jackson’s estate has slammed a doco about the singer’s last days
Next month marks the ninth anniversary of Michael Jackson’s passing. In the ensuing years, fans and the media alike have all taken looks back at the musician’s life and death, but a new documentary has drawn the ire of Jackson’s estate, who have spoken out against the new film just a day before it is set to air.
As Rolling Stone reports, The Last Days of Michael Jackson is set to air on the American television network ABC on Thursday night, and will feature never-before-seen interviews as well as an in-depth look at the musician’s final days, including the controversial circumstances surrounding his death.
However, Jackson’s estate are none too pleased with the new documentary, stating it was made without their authorisation.
“We want consumers to know that The Last Days of Michael Jackson, a television special airing on ABC TV (a subsidiary of The Walt Disney Company) tomorrow May 24th, is not sponsored or approved by the Estate of Michael Jackson,” a statement from the Jackson estate explained.
“It is particularly disheartening that Disney, a company known to strongly believe in protecting its own IP rights, would choose to ignore these rights belonging to the Estate.”
Rolling Stone notes that Jackson’s estate also took issue with ABC’s use of “a copyrighted photo and silhouette image” of the singer, which has been subsequently removed from promotional materials.
“We are told ABC intends to use music and other intellectual property owned by the Estate such as photos, logos, artwork, and more in the program itself, without having licensed the rights to any such material,” the estate said.
“Imagine if this was done with any of ABC’s intellectual property,” Jackson’s estate concluded. “We believe the special to be another crass and unauthorized attempt to exploit the life, music and image of Michael Jackson without respect for Michael’s legacy, intellectual property rights or his children.”
ABC has since responded to the claims, noting that “The program does not infringe on his estate’s rights, but as a courtesy, we removed a specific image from the promotional material.” At this stage, the special is still set to air on Thursday night (US time).
Michael Jackson passed away at the age of 50 in 2009 from what was ruled to be a heart attack brought on by “acute propofol intoxication”. Conrad Murray, Jackson’s physician at the time, was found guilty of involuntary manslaughter in 2011, and was sentenced to two years in prison for the musician’s death.
Back in February, a US medium claimed that he had made contact with Michael Jackson during the filming of an episode of Hollywood Medium With Tyler Henry (infer from that what you will).
“It’s still one of the most surprising, bizarre, surreal experiences in my life,” explained medium Tyler Henry. “What I thought was so interesting when Michael connected to LaToya was that I was kind of expecting Michael Jackson to come through like moonwalking with like a whole audience full of people and a lot of feeling of like celebrity. But when he came through he was quite the opposite.”
“He came through very vulnerable, very private. He came across just like a brother trying to connect with his sister and it really wasn’t that different than if I were connecting any random person to their brother,” Henry continued. “And it was just really special because it showed universally these connections are all something we can relate to. And even if we’re a celebrity in life, they still connect on a personal level on the other side.”
Check out Michael Jackson’s ‘Thriller’:
The article was originally published on Tone Deaf