During an interview with The Telegraph, singer Mary Wilson spoke about everything from her time on Dancing with the Stars to the founding of the American female singing group The Supremes. She also touched on the allegations of sexual abuse leveled against Michael Jackson in the controversial HBO documentary Leaving Neverland.
According to Wilson, who knew Jackson well as he was a fellow Motown Records musician, the allegations brought forth by Wade Robson and James Safechuck “surprised” her
“I was surprised, sure,” she said.
“Because that’s not what I knew. It’s like anybody else – you don’t know what they do in their bedroom. But I had no idea, and would never have thought that. I’m sorry if that was true. Really sorry.”
Despite the accusations, Wilson claims that Jackson was a “great young man.” She says he was close to her adopted son, Chico, and the pair would often play together.
“In fact when I saw him at the World Music Awards he came up and asked: ‘Mary, how is Willie?'” she said. “That’s what I remember.”
Many celebrities have spoken out in defense of Jackson. Jason Weaver, who played Jackson in the 1992 miniseries The Jacksons: An American Dream, recently spoke about the accusations in an interview with DJ Vlad on VladTV. Although he prayed for Robson and Safechuck if their story is true, he claims that — based on his positive experiences with Jackson and his family — he is choosing not to believe the accusations.
Can't believe it's been a week since my last dance with Brandon! ???? To everyone getting ready for their dances tonight: break a leg!! I'll be remembering how much fun I had! ???????????? (Do me a favor: share this with anyone who needs to learn some Aretha Franklin!!) #DWTS @DancingABC pic.twitter.com/B6laudCGCO
— Mary Wilson (@MWilsonSupreme) September 30, 2019
NME reports that Jackson’s former bodyguard, Matt Fiddes, claims that all of the accusations leveled against Jackson throughout the years are in the pursuit of money.
“It’s always financial,” Fiddes in the film. “It’s hard to understand how these allegations can be true.”
Fiddes has been one of Jackon’s most vehement defenders and was featured prominently in Michael Jackson: Chase the Truth. Along with Fiddes, Jackson biographer Mike Smallcombe spoke in the movie and echoed the former bodyguard, claiming that when it comes to the accusations against the King of Pop, “it’s always been about money.”
Despite Jackson’s many defenders, there are others who believe the allegations and director Dan Reed, who filmed Leaving Neverland, stands by his work. He claims that the amount of facts and “coherent evidence” provided by Robson and Safechuck are a sign that they are telling the truth.
Fiddes has invited Reed, Robson, and Safechuck to speak about their allegations on live U.K. television but nothing has yet materialized.