Oh Boy: Oprah Winfrey Expects Major Backlash Over Her Michael Jackson Special
Oprah Winfrey Says She Knows She Will Get Major Backlash Over Michael Jackson Special
Oprah Winfrey already knows that she’s going to be sparking some controversy with her new special After Neverland, an interview with the two men who have accused Michael Jackson of sexually abusing them when they were young.
The program is set to air on Monday, March 4th. Jackson accusers, Wade Robson and James Safechuck and Winfrey was joined on stage by the two men along with the director Dan Reed for a talk that was filled mixed emotions.
“I’m gonna get it,” the talk show host predicted during a taping of the broadcast on Wednesday. But, Oprah argued, the issue of sexual abuse is too important to remain silent no matter how much her program angers the “gloved one’s” fans. “This movie transcends Michael Jackson,” she told an audience of over 100 abuse survivors. “It allows us to see societal corruption.”
But Here’s What Oprah Thinks:
Winfrey made it clear that she finds the men’s allegations credible, but the Jackson estate has pushed back aggressively against Robson and Safechuck, dismissing them as “opportunists” and “perjurers.”
Both Robson and Safechuck said it took them years to come to grips with what happened to them as children. Robson suffered two nervous breakdowns and Safechuck had insomnia and depression. And yet their feelings toward Jackson are complicated. They still admire his music and Safechuck, who seemed to be the more vulnerable of the two men, still grapples with guilt after going public with his claims.
Before going public with his abuse claims in 2013, Robson was known for being one of Jackson’s most avid defenders, denying the pop star had ever behaved inappropriately while serving as a key defense witness in the pop star’s 2005 child molestation trial.
The documentary has thrust the two men and their families back into the public spotlight. They’ve not only had to contend with a combative Jackson Estate and angry fans of the singer — Robson has received death threats. However, Robson and Safechuck were warmly received by an audience that had suffered similar traumas.