NME reports that Michael Jackson’s estate has raked in nearly $2 billion since the King of Pops’s death a decade ago. Specifically, the estate gained $1.7 billion (£1.36 billion) since Jackson’s death in 2009 from acute propofol and benzodiazepine intoxication.
According to documents submitted to Los Angeles County Court by the estate’s executor and lawyers, the revenue stems from “unprecedented business deals.”
“With the assistance of their counsel, the Executors have successfully rebuilt and enhanced Michael Jackson’s image, solidified the MJJ business as a significant entity in the entertainment industry, entered into and continue to enter into unprecedented business deals that have produced, and will in the future produce, significant revenues for the Estate.”
Jackson’s estate is currently involved in a legal battle with HBO over the Leaving Neverland documentary, claiming that it breaks a 1992 arbitration agreement stating that the network cannot make disparaging remarks about the singer or harm his reputation. Recent reports say the lawsuit is moving to arbitration after HBO attempted to avoid the process by citing free speech concerns.
Leaving Neverland covers allegations from Wade Robson and James Safechuck, who claim that Jackson abused them as children. Since the release of the film, the pair — along with director Dan Reed — have been the subject of attacks from Jackson’s ardent supporters, who believe that the movie is a cash-grab.
— Michael Jackson (@michaeljackson) September 17, 2019
As The Inquisitr reported, the Jackson estate’s lawyers, John Branca and Howard Weitzman, believe that Leaving Neverland is another example of the racist movement to punish Jackson for his success.
“There’s a large segment of the press that doesn’t care whether Michael is innocent or guilty because it’s not controversial enough. In the end, I really believe it’s a form of racism,” Branca said, per Variety.
Others, such as comedian Godfrey, claims that while Jackson is innocent, he brought the allegations onto himself. According to Godfrey, someone with Jackson’s level of fame and power should have known they would have a target on their back all the time.
“That’s his own choice, you brought that on yourself. You’re too big to be doing certain things. You gotta know what the f*ck you’re doing,” he said in an interview with VladTV — available on YouTube.
Reed, Robson, and Safechuck continue to stand by the film. Reed claims that he did everything he could to try and poke holes in Robson and Safechuck’s stories and suggests that the Jackson estate’s denial is about protecting the late pop star’s legacy to preserve his estate’s wealth.