Entertainer Joey Fatone was a guest on the Friday, March 8, episode of CBS’ The Talk. While he was mainly there to chat about the new Game Show Network program he hosts, Common Knowledge, he also spoke about one of the week’s most controversial topics, Leaving Neverland.
As most people know, the HBO documentary focused on two of the men, Wade Robson and James Safechuck, that have accused late pop star Michael Jackson of sexually abusing them as children. Leaving Neverland debuted on the network earlier in the week.
When Fatone was a member of *NSYNC in the late 1990s and early 2000s, he often worked closely with Robson, who choreographed many of the boy band’s tours and other live performances. Robson also co-wrote the hit singles “Pop” and “Gone” for *NSYNC’s 2001 album, Celebrity.
“It’s, of course, hard to watch all of [Leaving Neverland], especially when they go into detail,” Fatone shared with The Talk’s five co-hosts, Sara Gilbert, Eve, Sharon Osbourne, Carrie Ann Inaba, and Sheryl Underwood.
“But it’s interesting to see the whole dynamic as far as what Wade felt and how he was as a kid looking up to [Michael Jackson]. That was his idol, that was his love.”
The 42-year-old, who was recently revealed to be the rabbit on Fox’s popular competition series The Masked Singer, was very careful with the words he used when discussing the allegations against the King of Pop made by his old pal. He also did not choose a side.
We're playing a round of #CommonKnowledge today with the ladies of @TheTalkCBS today! Thanks for an awesome round @realjoeyfatone @sherylunderwood @MrsSOsbourne @TheRealEve @carrieanninaba @THEsaragilbert! pic.twitter.com/SGi8ulVamR— Game Show Network (@GameShowNetwork) March 8, 2019
“You cannot know 100 percent if there is 100 percent truth, or if it’s 100 percent false, or if it’s a mixture,” said Fatone, adding that Jackson cannot respond to the accusations since they are being made almost 10 years after the singer’s 2009 death.
He then told a story about how he saw Robson and Jackson working close together firsthand in September of 2001 when Robson choreographed *NSYNC’s MTV Video Music Awards performance that featured a special guest appearance from MJ. This was many years after the alleged abuse took place.
Fatone said that, at the time, Robson never mentioned that he had any issues working with or being around Jackson.
“He was gung-ho 100 percent always talking about, ‘I got Michael’s new look, we’re cutting his hair…’ There were all these stories of that, but it was never anything about [being] timid, or scared, or nervous. It seemed like nothing was going on.”
He then said that he loves Robson, and hopes that he can move on with his life “if that is something that really happened.”
Fatone’s show, Common Knowledge, airs at 5:30 p.m. weekdays on the Game Show Network, and The Talk airs weekdays at 2 p.m. ET/1 p.m. PT on CBS.