Michael Jackson responded to HBO’s Leaving Neverland documentary with a lawsuit.
The estate claimed the network was breaching a 27-year-old defamation contract which was inked for HBO to air the singer’s documentary connected to his Dangerous album. The King of Pop’s heirs filed a notion to invoke an arbitration clause
As a result, the network moved the case from state to federal and claimed the deal was outdated, and the estate counter-filed a notion to get the case back to the state.
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“I’m a great fan of art. I love Michelangelo. If I had the chance to talk to him or read about him, I would want to know about what inspired him to become who he is – the anatomy of his craftsmanship. Not about who he went out with last night, or why he decided to sit out in the sun so long…” – Michael Jackson in 1993 Michael spent some down-time in Italy in May 1988 while traveling the world on the BAD tour. He visited the Sistine Chapel in Rome and St. Peter’s Cathedral in Vatican City, and also visited Michelangelo’s statue of David in Florence.
HBO stated that Michael Jackson’s Estate legal motion was a “transparent effort to bolster their publicity campaign against the documentary.” The network assured that there are no existing contracts that will affect the controversial docu-series.
HBO’s lawyers argued for a federal judge to determine the “gateway issues of validity and arbitrability.” An act, Michael Jackson’s estate called “classic tautology.”
Ultimately the judge denied both notions and HBO took home the W. But U.S. District Court Judge George H. Wu called for both parties to bring in evidence on the issue of arbitration.