Michael Jackson’s estate has filed a $100 million lawsuit against HBO on Thursday over plans to air a documentary ‘Leaving Neverland’, that alleges that the singer sexually abused two young boys.
The lawsuit seeks to compel HBO to litigate the matter in a public arbitration process and claims that the estate could be awarded $100 million or more in damages.
The 53-page suit was filed in Los Angeles Superior Court. It claims that HBO was violating a “non-disparagement” agreement by airing “Leaving Neverland,” which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival this year.
“Michael Jackson is innocent. Period,” the suit says. “In 2005, Michael Jackson was subjected to a trial — where rules of evidence and law were applied before a neutral judge and jury and where both sides were heard — and he was exonerated by a sophisticated jury.
“Ten years after his passing, there are still those out to profit from his enormous worldwide success and take advantage of his eccentricities,” it adds.
The four-hour, the two-part documentary is set to air next month on HBO on March 3rd and 4th. It includes the testimonies of two men, Wade Robson, and James Safechuck, according to whom, the King of Pop sexually abused them when they were 7 and 10 years old.
In a statement issued earlier, HBO has announced that it planned to broadcast the documentary as scheduled.
The statement reads, “Despite the desperate lengths taken to undermine the film, our plans remain unchanged. HBO will move forward with the airing of ‘Leaving Neverland,’ the two-part documentary on March 3rd and 4th. This will allow everyone the opportunity to assess the film and the claims in it for themselves.”