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MJ Producer Dropped From Wrongful Death Suit

2/1/2011 3:13 PM PST BY TMZ STAFF

Michael Jackson's producer of the "This Is It" tour just got a break in the wrongful death lawsuit filed by Katherine Jackson -- he's been dropped as a defendant ... TMZ has learned.

Michael Jackson Wrongful Death Suit
Kenny Ortega was sued by Katherine, who claimed he was part of AEG's alleged plan to give Michael anything he needed in order for him to perform.

Katherine's lawyer, Kevin Boyle, tells TMZ, "Based on recently discovered information, the Jackson family has determined that Mr. Ortega should not be a defendant," adding, "The Jackson Family apologizes for any discomfort or inconvenience this may have caused Mr. Ortega."

It's always a discomfort to be sued for wrongful death.



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Not all the guys in "This Is It" were MJ. They just didn't move or act like him. Sorry not buying this whole thing. It was a collection of look alikes/asimilars.

Posted at 5:09 PM on Feb 1, 2011 by nobleday

I totally agree. Michael himself said on several occasions he used impersonators sometimes, even on stage to distract the audience while he was setting up for the next song. I highly doubt he only used them for that and as "doubles" to go out the front of hotels, etc, while he went in the back. And no one will ever convince me the guy at the O2 press conference was Michael.

Posted at 5:38 PM on Feb 1, 2011 by Deb

and neither was the poor dude who took his place at UCLA...
and on that autopsy table.

you gotta hand it to him.

Michael Jackson is also the KING OF CON.

1360 days ago


@Tellit - yw! BTW, I believe I had the privilege of being called that first ROFLMAO

1360 days ago


I'm a little insulted - no fanatics here to verbally behead me yet. I can usually set my watch by you people!

1360 days ago


Michael Jackson’s Mother, the Estate, and Money–the Real Story
06/27/10 11:26pm
Roger Friedman

After a weekend of wrong headed reporting and terrible TV specials that didn’t get much right–like ABC’s ridiculous “20/20″ extravaganza and Ian Halperin‘s hideous “do***entary”–here’s the real story of Katherine Jackson, Michael’s estate, and money.

Mrs. Jackson went behind her own lawyer’s back–that’s Adam Streisand–and signed a contract with Howard Mann, the Toronto entrepreneur. Mann has said on TV that his deal with Mrs. Jackson makes her a wealthy woman. But that’s not exactly true.

According to the contract between Mann and Mrs. Jackson, which I’ve seen, Katherine Jackson is getting $10,000 in advance and 10,000 a month for promoting audio and video recordings that could be turned into a book or biography called “The Katherine Jackson Story.” The contract was signed on February 3, 2010 and witnessed only by Sonia Lowe, Mann’s collaborator. Streisand has never seen the contract. “The Katherine Jackson Story” became her book, “Never Can Say Goodbye.”

“My expectation is Katherine nets $10 million,” says Mann of Mrs. Jackson’s participation in the project. He thinks “Never Can Say Goodbye” will sell a million copies. So far it’s sold between 25,000 and 50,000.

The contract for these “performances” states that Mrs. Jackson will receive $5000 for promotional appearances. In other words, she was paid for showing up at the Jackson family event on Saturday at the Beverly Hilton. That may be why she agreed to return from Indiana on Saturday morning to promote “Never Can Say Goodbye.” Those audio recordings, transcribed and written by Sonia Lowe, became the copy for the book. The video interview was used in part for the NBC “Dateline” show on Friday night.

Insiders are scratching their heads wondering Mrs. Jackson entered into such an agreement, especially without legal representation. Going along proper channels, Mrs. Jackson could have picked up a seven figure advance from any New York publishing house.

“we did the deal between us,” Mann says. “Who was she going to call? Adam Streisand? He’s paid by the estate.”

Indeed, until the estate is settled–there are still outstanding claims–Michael’s estate is paying his mother’s lawyer’s fees. But that is not unusual.

And it’s not like Mrs. Jackson needs the money. According to those familiar with the as yet unsettled estate, Mrs. Jackson’s financial life since Michael died has been an easy one. Before he died, she was constantly in debt with the threat of foreclosure.

But since then, the Jackson executors have paid off the $5 million mortgage on the Encino estate known as Hayvenhurst (and always owned by Michael, not his parents); given Mrs. Jackson a new $90,000 Cadillac Escalade; paid salaries for everyone at the house including private chefs and Mrs. Jackson’s secretary, Janice; and all of her needs separate from funds which the children receive.

“She’s never been denied one thing she’s asked for,” says an estate source.

But Howard Mann insists that Mrs. Jackson is receiving “only” nine thousand dollars a month. It’s not enough, he says, to cover her expenses in Encino and at homes she maintains in Las Vegas and Gary, Indiana.

As for the children attending private school this fall, my sources say Mrs. Jackson has never even asked the estate for help or guidance.

Altogether, I am told, approximately $8 million has been spent on Mrs. Jackson this year including the buying out of the mortgage. So where has it all gone? And why would she make a deal for $10,000 a month to be in business with a total stranger?

The overriding theory: that Joe Jackson–who has no income and has tried to get an allowance of his own from the estate without success–is prevailing upon his much beleaguered wife for funds. He lives in Las Vegas, for example; Mrs. Jackson does not.

Yeah....good ole KatherineJ (nee Kattie Screws) is one greedy ugly bitch.

1360 days ago


The Jackson family should add themselves, especially Katherine, for not taking action for a conservatorship of Michael & getting him the help he needed when he was alive. They should also include all the doctors before that enabled Michael.

Posted at 10:19 AM on Feb 1, 2011 by Googie


1360 days ago


I love Michael Jackson's Photo so much he looks hot in it!!!Mrs. Jackson is doing what any Mother would do so please be nice to her.So ein schönes Bild von MJ ich habe es so lieb.

1360 days ago


I love Michael Jackson's Photo so mtch he looks hot in it!!!Mrs Jackson is doing what any Mother would do so please be nice to her.So ein schoenes Bild von MJ ich habe es so lieb.

1360 days ago


Kenny Ortega probably should not have been included with this lawsuit and maybe they are right in dropping him from it. But I still feel like he is holding back something. His story changed from when Michael died to the preliminary hearing when he testified. I hope we will find out more from him if he is called as a witness at the trial and is under oath. I would like to think he was a friend to MJ but something is still not right with the picture he has drawn. Guess we will have to wait and see. I hope I am wrong about the way I feel about Ortega.

rip mj

1360 days ago


Oh GOD please keep me in my Bubble!!!!!!!!!!!!Worked all day and then have to read such horrible things.....Please put me back in my perfect little bubble wold!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!At least for rest of the night !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

1360 days ago


Thank you Kathy. I'm not really sure about Kenny. He was at the meeting a few days before Michael's death at his house where the screws were reportedly put to Michael about perform or else! This was reported in his own testimony at the hearing. This is It was beautifully edited but even then there was evidence of Michael's exhaustion and health issues. Certainly Kenny couldn't have stopped what happened and apparently sent Michael home when he was sick and was scolded for having done so. I understand the Jackson's including him in the original suit especially if Katherine still had not seen This is It as she said she han't to witness Kenny's efforts at protecting Michael. Interesting too how those scenes all made the cut. Hmmm.

1360 days ago


Thank heaven Katherine backed off this one. It always been clear that Kenny loved and respected Michael and Michael loved and trusted Kenny. Katherine got this one wrong. At least she had the courage to admit it and apologize.

1360 days ago


Wasn't Michael 125 pounds when he died and 6 ft 0? I really don't think he was too thin. If anything, he lacked muscle weight. Haven't still watched TII btw, too depressing.

1360 days ago


I believe when he died he was 5'9 and 136 pounds...

1360 days ago


I believe when he died he was 5'9 and 136 pounds...

Posted at 7:16 PM on Feb 1, 2011 by Paulette

That appears accurate. But people are saying he was too thin? This was not too thin, just slender. The lowest Michael ever weigh was 113 pounds during the 84' Victory Tour, now that is too thin.

1360 days ago


You rabid idiots would still think Michael Jackson looked beautiful even if he weighed 65lbs, took off his makeup and wig, nose, and showed you his he/shesit vagina, and the inner workings/malfunctions of his dark and evil psyche.

Unconditional love?
Absolutely not.....
more like people of pre gradeschool intellect who are in desperate need of a reality check, an eye exam, and more cultural purpose in their evidently neglected pursuit of worthwhile endeavors in their lives.....

Delusional naggets!

1360 days ago
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