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Wade Robson

'Michael Jackson Was a Monster'

And Sexual Abuser

5/8/2013 12:54 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
EXCLUSIVE

0507-wade-robson-tmz-michael-jacksonThe lawyer for famed choreographer Wade Robson tells TMZ, Michael Jackson was a "monster" who sexually abused Wade for seven years as a child ... and threatened him if he ever went public.

Robson's lawyer, Henry Gradstein, tells TMZ, "Last year, on a career trajectory that was off the charts, he [Wade] collapsed under the stress and sexual trauma of what had happened to him for seven years as a child."

Robson spent many weekends with Jackson at Neverland Ranch and his other homes in L.A. and Vegas between ages 7 and 14.

Gradstein goes on ... "He [Wade] lived with the brain washing by a sexual predator until the burden of it all crushed him."

Gradstein says Michael would tell Wade, "If anyone ever finds out about what we did we will go to jail for the rest of our lives" and “our lives will be ruined forever.”  

Gradstein tells us the threats worked, and Wade kept his mouth shut, adding, "This kind of intimidation of a child by a sexual predator is tragically characteristic and effective, keeping them quiet about the abuse - often for a lifetime."

Wade was steadfast for years that MJ did NOT molest him and indeed became Jackson's star witness at his 2005 molestation trial, adamantly denying any untoward conduct.

The lawyer says, "Michael Jackson was a monster and in their hearts every normal person knows it."

TMZ broke the story ... 30-year-old Robson has filed a creditor's claim against MJ's estate alleging the singer molested him as a child and asking for damages. Sources tell us ... Wade is claiming the reason he didn't file the claim on time is because he repressed the memories of the abuse.

Gradstein says they have not asked for any specific amount of money in their legal docs, although that's clearly the point of filing a creditor's claim.  He then trashes what he calls "the Jackson money machine" which he says is "at it once again to keep the truth from coming out."  But he says, "This time it won't work."

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414 COMMENTS

No Avatar
226.

Randy    

I was sexually abused as a child from my mothers boyfriend when i was 10 til 14 when i ran away but i never repressed it, in fact it torcherd me for a long time. i got out of the situation as soon as i could. i acted up, got into trouble with the law, and i can understand people not wanting to talk about it but if they were molested by MJ they wouldnt go back unless it was worse than what MJ did or didnt do. I do think MJ was abused phisically and mentally by Joe, and his mother did nothing cause she was probably thinking it would be worse if she left. I think that MJ did have mental problems and was trying to live out his childhood again through the boys he always had around him. If you hang around someone long enough and as close as he was with the boys, thinking nothing about it he probably was naked and showered with some of the boys and as far as the boy who described MJ genitals, even i could see if he was cir***sized or not, not by the word " Cur***sized" or not but that it looked different or the same as what i looked like. I look at it as the courts found him not guilty and we need to accept that and that Wade would have done more good to say what happened so that if anyone was molested or those being molested now might be encouraged to do something but it looks like he is out for mony the way he is doing it

528 days ago
227.

Pegasus    

Wade Robson Will Have To Explain Several Gushing Interviews About Michael Jackson To Prove Molestation Claims Posted on May 10, 2013 @ 4:34AM | By jenheger Splash News/WENN Splash News/WENN Famed Australian choreographer Wade Robson — who recently filed a creditor’s claim against Michael Jackson’s Estate in which he accuses the King of Pop of sexually abusing him as a child — is going to have to explain several gushing interviews he gave in the last several years in which he praised the Thriller singer and boasted about working for the Cirque du Soleil tribute to the entertainer, RadarOnline.com is exclusively reporting. PHOTOS: Michael Jackson’s Kids Star In Tribute Concert On July 30, 2011, Robson gave an interview in support of Pulse on Tour NYC, and said, “I’m starting on Cirque du Soleil, the Michael Jackson Show, so it’s the equivalent of the Beetles Love Show, the Elvis Show, but for Michael, which is you know it’s exciting and terrifying all at the same time because it’s such a huge responsibility. But that is why I took it on, because he was such a huge part of my life for twenty years — before he passed — since I was seven. So it’s an opportunity for me to give back a little to his legacy, such a big part of his legacy and make sure as much as I can that it’s done right and represents his essence. So that is a really big undertaking.” As we previously reported, Robson was a star witness for Jackson at his infamous molestation trial in 2005, during which the Australian said he had NEVER been abused by the superstar singer. Robson, now 30, first met Jackson when he was 5 and had several sleepovers at the Bad singer’s Neverland Ranch — allegedly until he was 14. PHOTOS: Michael Jackson Through The Years In the court docs, obtained by RadarOnline.com, Robson’s attorney stated in a sworn declaration that the claim should be sealed because of “childhood sexual abuse in the universal complaint for childhood sexual abuse as described in the unified complaint for childhood sexual abuse attached to the Creditor’s claim.” Casting more doubt on Robson’s new claims, in an interview with Master Class Legends — uploaded to You Tube in July, 2012 — the choreographer gushed about the time he spent with Jackson as a child. In the interview, Robson recounts dancing on stage with Jackson at age seven, after winning a dance contest in which meeting & performing with the singer was the grand prize. He recalled being obsessed with Jackson’s Thriller video at the young age of 2. However, Robson recounted what fame and media scrutiny took a toll on Jackson. PHOTOS: Michael Jackson Performing “Particularly growing up with Michael, that is a whole other scale, that level of fame, and rightly so for all the amazing reasons, things and work did. But I saw how that tormented him as well. When I was really young, I idolized him, and wanted to be everything and anything he was on that sort of scale. Then as I was getting a little older, going through that experience (myself), kind of referring back to that sort of stuff I saw with Michael’s life and realizing for me personally, I don’t know if I want that particular version of life.” The timing of these interviews could be pivotal, if the judge allows the creditors claim to proceed, because the deadline has long since passed for those to be paid by the Estate. Howard Weitzman, attorney for Michael Jackson’s Estate, issued a statement after the claim was filed. “This is a young man who has testified at least twice under oath over the past 20 years and said in numerous interviews that Michael Jackson never did anything inappropriate to him or with him. Now, nearly four years after Michael has passed, this sad and less than credible claim has been made. We are confident that the court will see this for what it is.” PHOTOS: Really Bizarre Celebrity Pets Robson’s attorney fired back and said, ” “Michael Jackson was a monster, and in their hearts, every normal person knows it. Wade Robson, in addition to being one of the most talented people on the planet, is one of the kindest, most gentle, decent and introspective human beings one will ever meet. He is the loving father of a young son and happily married. Last year, on a career trajectory that was off the charts, he collapsed under the stress and sexual trauma of what had happened to him for seven years as a child. He lived with the brain washing by a sexual predator until the burden of it all crushed him. ‘If anyone ever finds out about what we did we will go to jail for the rest of our lives, and our lives will be ruined forever,’ Michael would say to him. “This kind of intimidation of a child by a sexual predator is tragically characteristic and effective, keeping them quiet about the abuse ­ often for a lifetime. The irony here is that we were the ones who filed under seal and still tried to keep it secret. Amidst all the accusations of a financial motive, no amount of damages is even listed in our papers. There are significant legal issues involved in this case that have the potential to impact lives beyond just our client. But the Jackson money machine, in which everyone is indeed financially motivated, is at it once again to keep the truth from coming out. This time it won’t work.” The first hearing in Robson¹s claim is scheduled for June 6. As a choreographer, Robson has worked with some of music’s biggest names, including Britney Spears, Usher, Pink and ‘N Sync. He’s also appeared on FOX’s So You Think You Can Dance as both a judge and choreographer.

528 days ago
228.

Pegasus    

Witness: Michael Jackson was paranoid, talking to himself in last days

By Alan Duke, CNN

updated 10:24 PM EDT, Thu May 9, 2013


The death in 2009 of superstar Michael Jackson, who died of cardiac arrest at the age of 50, sent shockwaves around the world. The death in 2009 of superstar Michael Jackson, who died of cardiac arrest at the age of 50, sent shockwaves around the world.

The Jackson 5 perform on a TV show circa 1969. From left, Tito Jackson, Marlon Jackson, Michael Jackson, Jackie Jackson and Jermaine Jackson.

Michael Jackson quickly became the stand out star of the Jackson 5. Here he performs onstage circa 1970.

Michael Jackson poses during a portrait session in Los Angeles in 1971.

Michael Jackson performs with The Jacksons in New Orleans on October 3, 1979.

Jackson achieved superstardom with his solo career in the 1980s. Here Jackson is shown on stage in Kansas in 1983.

Michael Jackson performs on stage circa 1990.

Jackson broke a world record during the Bad tour in 1988 when 504,000 people attending seven sold-out shows at Wembley Stadium in London.

Jackson perfoms in concert circa 1991 in New York City.

Known for his dance moves, Jackson is seen here jumping in the air while performing during the Dangerous tour in 1992.

Michael Jackson performs in Rotterdam, Netherlands.

Jackson performs with his brothers.

Jackson performs during the Bad tour at Wembley Stadium in London.

Jackson performs during the taping of "American Bandstand's 50th: A Celebration" in 2002.

Michael Jackson earned the Legend Award during the MTV Video Music Awards in Tokyo in 2006.

HIDE CAPTION


Michael Jackson, King of Pop

STORY HIGHLIGHTS
Michael Jackson's longtime makeup artist testifies about his good times, last days
Jackson "was acting like a person I didn't recognize" Karen Faye says
Jackson tried to avoid rehearsing for "This Is It," Faye testifies
"They had to make him rehearse," she says

Los Angeles (CNN) -- Michael Jackson appeared paranoid, repeating himself and shivering from chills in his final days, his longtime makeup artist testified Thursday.

"This was not the man I knew," Karen Faye testified. "He was acting like a person I didn't recognize."

Faye, who did Jackson's makeup and hair for 27 years, was the sixth witness called by lawyers for Michael Jackson's mother and children in their wrongful death lawsuit against concert promoter AEG Live. She testified Thursday and will return to the stand Friday in a Los Angeles courtroom.

The Jacksons contend that AEG Live is liable in the pop icon's June 25, 2009, death from an overdose of a surgical anesthetic because it negligently hired, retained or supervised the doctor treating him.

Michael Jackson's brightest and darkest moments brought laughter and tears as Faye testified.

Katherine Jackson: Michael's mother, 82, was deposed for nine hours over three days by AEG Live lawyers. As the guardian of her son's three children, she is a plaintiff in the wrongful death lawsuit against the company that promoted Michael Jackson's comeback concerts.


Prince Jackson: Michael's oldest son is considered a key witness in the Jacksons' case against AEG Live, since he is expected to testify about what his father told him about the concert promoter in the last days of his life. Prince, who turned 16 in February, is becoming more independent -- he now has a driver's license and jobs.


Paris Jackson: Michael's daughter, who turns 15 on April 3, is on the list of witnesses and was questioned by AEG Live lawyers for several hours on March 21 about her father's death. Paris is an outspoken teen who often posts messages to her 1 million-plus Twitter followers.


Blanket Jackson: Although AEG Live asked the judge to order Blanket, 11, to sit for a deposition, and he is one of the four plaintiffs suing them, Michael's youngest son will not be a witness in the trial. His doctor submitted a note to the court saying it would be "medically detrimental" to the child.


Kevin Boyle: The Los Angeles personal injury lawyer is leading the Jackson team of at least six attorneys in the wrongful death suit against AEG Live. One of his notable cases was a large settlement with Boeing on behalf of two soldiers injured when their helicopter malfunctioned and crashed in Iraq.


Perry Sanders, Jr.: Katherine Jackson's personal lawyer is helping steer the Jackson matriarch through her relations with her son's estate, probate court and the wrongful death suit. He is also known for representing the family of Biggie Smalls in their suit against the city of Los Angeles over the rapper's death investigation.


Marvin Putnam: He's the lead lawyer for AEG Live, defending against the wrongful death suit. The primary focus of his legal practice is "media in defense of their First Amendment rights," according to his official biography.


Philip Anschutz: The billionaire owner of AEG, parent company of AEG Live, is on the Jacksons' witness list. He is the force behind the effort to build a football stadium in downtown Los Angeles to lure a National Football League team to the city. He recently pulled his company off the market after trying to sell it for $8 billion.


Tim Leiweke: He was recently fired as AEG's president as Philip Anschutz announced he was taking a more active role in the company. The Jackson lawyers say Leiweke's e-mail exchanges with executives under him concerning Michael Jackson's health are important evidence in their case.


Joe Jackson: Michael's father, 84, is on the witness list for the trial and may testify. The Jackson family patriarch, who lives in Las Vegas separately from his wife, has suffered several ministrokes in the last year, which some close to him say have affected him.


Randy Phillips: He's president of AEG Live, the concert promoter that contracted with Michael Jackson for his "This Is It" comeback shows set to start in London in July 2009. The Jackson lawsuit says Phillips supervised Dr. Conrad Murray's treatment of Jackson in the weeks before his death, making the company liable for damages. E-mails between Phillips and other executives showed they were worried about Jackson's missed rehearsals and sought Murray's help getting him ready.


Paul Gongaware: The AEG Live co-CEO worked closely with Michael Jackson as he prepared for his comeback concerts. He testified at Dr. Conrad Murray's criminal trial that he contacted the physician and negotiated his hiring at the request of Jackson. AEG lawyers say it was Jackson who chose, hired and supervised Murray. Gongaware knew Jackson well, having been tour manager for the singer in previous years.


Kenny Ortega: He was chosen by Michael Jackson and AEG Live to direct and choreograph the "This Is It" shows. Ortega, who choreographed for Jackson's "Dangerous" and "HIStory" tours, testified at Dr. Conrad Murray's criminal trial that "Jackson was frail" at a rehearsal days before his death.


Dr. Conrad Murray: He was Michael Jackson's personal physician in the two months before his death, giving him nightly infusions of the surgical anesthetic that the coroner ruled led to his death. Murray, who is appealing his involuntary manslaughter conviction, has sworn that he would invoke his Fifth Amendment protection from self-incrimination and refused to testify in the civil trial. There is a chance that Murray will be brought into court from jail to testify outside the presence of the jury to allow the judge to determine if he would be ordered to testify.


John Branca: He's one of two executors of Michael Jackson's estate. Branca was Jackson's lawyer until about seven years before his death. He said Jackson rehired him just weeks before he died.

Who's who in Jackson trial Who's who in Jackson trial


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Joe Jackson: I see Michael in 'Blanket'
His last days

Faye, who traveled with Jackson on his "Bad," "Dangerous" and "History" tours, said she was concerned when she first saw the schedule for Jackson's 50 "This Is It" shows at London's O2 arena.

"On looking at that, I said, 'He can't do this,'" Faye testified. "The shows are far too close together. I knew what he needed between shows. I thought he might last a week."

When she raised the matter with show director Kenny Ortega, "he kind of fluffed it off," she said.

"Michael's adrenaline and what it takes for him to perform with that much effort and what he himself puts into a show, he needed a lot more time to at least get some rest and sleep, and to be healthy and maintain that kind of longevity," she said.

He was "very upbeat, but he was on the thin side" when she saw him in April as preparations for the start of the shows in July were under way, she said. "I thought he had plenty of time to put on some body mass and muscle mass."

Jackson appeared "very, very excited" in early production meetings, but "the first time he actually got up on stage and rehearsed, I saw the change in him."

"The turning point was when he had to get up on stage and actually start performing," she said.

Jackson hated live performances, she said. "It was just too hard on him."

Eventually, "they had to make him rehearse," she said. "They're insisting to the point of going to his home."

In Jackson's last days, Faye was pressured to ignore what Jackson told her to do and instead take her direction from Randy Phillips, AEG's CEO, she testified. She once was ordered to put Jackson on stage and place his earpiece in when he did not want it, she said.

"I was supposed to exhibit tough love" and not listen to what Jackson was telling her to do, Faye testified.

At one point, Jackson locked himself in a bathroom at his home, refusing to leave for rehearsals at the Forum. AEG Live Co-CEO Paul Gongaware, who was in charge of the production, was "angry and kind of desperate to get Michael to the Forum," she said.

She overheard a phone call in which Gongaware was telling Jackson's security guard "to get him out of the bathroom. Do you have a key? Do whatever it takes," she said Gongaware screamed.

At a rehearsal in mid-June, Jackson was "very stoic" and seem "frightened." He was talking to himself, she said. "When I was around, he was repeating himself an awful lot, saying the same thing over and over again."

"He kept repeating, 'why can't I choose,' it was one of the things he repeated over and over again," she said.

A show producer testified Wednesday that Jackson told Ortega "God keeps talking to me."

Faye said she suggested to Ortega that a psychologist should be brought in to assess Jackson.

Faye, who had to touch Jackson when she put on his makeup, said it was "like I was touching ice." At one rehearsal, she covered him with blankets and put a space heater next to him, she said.

"I've never seen him so emaciated," she said.

Faye said she raised her concerns once in June with Phillips. He told her, "Yeah, this is bad. It's not so good. I had to scrape Michael off the floor in London at the announcement because he was so drunk," she said.

Faye testified that Phillips told her at Jackson's funeral that "he tried to do everything he could."

Did she believe him, asked Jackson lawyer Brian Panish.

"Sir, Michael Jackson is lying in a casket only a few feet away from me," she said. "I had no words to respond. That's not everything you can do."

The dark days

Michael Jackson endured pain for years caused by head burns suffered while filming a Pepsi commercial in 1984 and a back injury from an onstage mishap during a concert in Munich, Germany, she said.

Faye, who witnessed both incidents, described them.

"His hair caught fire, but he kept dancing," she said, as jurors watched the infamous video of pyrotechnics igniting Jackson's head as he danced down stairs on a stage. "I was screaming and Miko (Brando) got through somehow and had to wrestle him to the ground, because he had no idea he was on fire. Miko put the fire out with his hand."

The fire burned off a section of hair, which doctors tried to repair with surgery to stretch his scalp, she said. Jackson suffered migraine headaches after that, she said.

Later, a bridge suspended above a stage collapsed as Jackson danced on top of it during a show in Munich, she said.

"When I saw what happened, I thought he could be dead," Faye testified. But Jackson held onto his microphone, stood up and finished the song. "He said 'I can't disappoint the audience,'" she said. So he finished the show finale but collapsed in the dressing room when it was over, she said.

"He suffered back pain from that moment on," she said.

Along with the pain, Jackson had trouble sleeping on tour.

Jackson "was so buzzed by his own adrenaline after a show" it would "take him 24 hours to relax his body and, sometimes it would take two days to be able to sleep," said Faye.

"As the tour went on, shows got closer and closer, and he would have trouble sleeping," she said. "It would start out OK, but it would get worse and worse. He tried to find ways to deal with it."

Dealing with it involved a series of doctors, she said.

"Michael always believed that a doctor had his best interest at heart," Faye said. "He believed if he got something through a doctor that it was safe and OK for him to use it."

Faye testified that nurse Debbie Rowe, who would later become Jackson's second wife and the mother of his two oldest children, would travel with them on the "Dangerous" tour in 1992 with "a little bag" of medications.

"Debbie Rowe asked me to learn how to give injections," she said. "I thought about it and said 'No.' I am not qualified to handle any kind of medications."

When the tour was on its way to Bangkok, Thailand, Faye was asked to carry a package she was told contained medicine patches for Jackson's pain, she testified. She refused to travel with it, she said.

Faye testified that the tour doctor, Dr. Stuart Finkelstein, later told her "I'm glad you weren't carrying it. It has vials and syringes. If you had brought this in, you might not be here." The implication was she could have been arrested for smuggling drugs.

Gongaware, now the Co-CEO of AEG Live, was in charge of logistics for the "Dangerous" tour and was involved in the incident, Faye said.

Finkelstein used "a balance of medications strong enough to overcome Michael's pain," Faye said.

Later in the tour in Singapore, Jackson stumbled into his dressing room before a show, she said. "He was having a very hard time walking," she said. "He was glazed over. He fell over a tree."

She told the tour doctor, whom she identified as Dr. David Forecast, that "Michael can't go on."

His show opened with him being thrust onto the stage by a "toaster," which requires him to "curl up and be shot up" from a small enclosure under the stage, she said.

"His arm could be severed," Faye said. "I feared for his safety, I feared for his life. I told Dr. Forecast, 'You can't make him go out. You can't take him.' And he said, 'Yes, I can.'"

The doctor "backed me up against the wall and put his hands around my neck and said 'You don't know what your doing,'" she testified. "I nearly fainted, and he grabbed Michael and took him to the stage."

The show, however, was eventually canceled, she said.

"Michael was under a lot of stress at that time because that's when the first child allegations were made public," Faye said. "Michael had to go on stage every night knowing that the whole world thought he was a pedophile. He had to stand up in front of all these audiences with the physical pain that he had and knowing that everybody in that audience is thinking that he was the vilest pedophile on earth. To this day I don't know how he did that."

The tour ended early when it reached Mexico City "because everybody knew Michael had a problem," she said. Elizabeth Taylor came down to Mexico to get Jackson, and "we all went home."

Faye later flew to England to join Michael at a rehab facility, which she described as a beautiful country home.

Michael's brighter days

Before Faye's darker testimony began, the courtroom was unusually relaxed with smiles and laughs throughout the jury box.

It started when Jackson lawyer Panish asked her "What is a makeup and hair artist?"

"Makeup and hair!" Faye responded, triggering loud laughter from jurors.

"Can you help me?" Panish joked.

Panish had Faye read to the jury the dedication note from the "Thriller" album: "This album is lovingly dedicated to Katherine Jackson."

Faye and Jackson became "very close" starting in the early 1980s, she said. "It was almost like a brother and sister relationship. If I was having trouble, I could call him and he could call me. You talk, you share, you become very close and imagine that over 27 years."

Jurors viewed a series of photos of Faye and Jackson together through the years, including one taken in January 1996, the day after Lisa Marie Presley filed for divorce from Jackson.

Jackson was upset because just before filing, Presley called him and begged him not to file for divorce, she said.

"She begged and begged, saying please don't file," Faye said. Jackson promised not to file, only to see "the next morning it was all over the press that she filed before him." The photo of Jackson out with Faye "was to give the press something to talk about" with Faye being "the mysterious blonde."

Jurors watched several videos that showed Jackson's talent and impact, a sharp contrast to all of the testimony about drug addiction and death.

They viewed several minutes of Jackson's "Thriller," which Faye pointed out was a short film, not just a music video.

Part of Jackson's 1993 Super Bowl halftime show was viewed, including his rendition of "We Are the World." "It was a very big deal, sir," Faye said. "I think it started the trend of having a big artist at the Super Bowl."

A clip from a Jackson concert in Bucharest, Romania, showed jurors how fanatical his fans were, dozens of them fainting as he sang "Man In the Mirror."

When his 1995 MTV awards performance was shown, Faye noted, "He can moonwalk in a circle."

Jackson's stamina during a show was remarkable, she said. "Some dancers would pass out, but Michael would be fine. He was able to do it."

Faye's testimony took all day Thursday and was set to resume Friday morning

528 days ago
229.

Shayshay1980    

Wade Robinson is trying to make a name for is self again because he hasn't been hot it years! This is a jacked up way of doing it MJ is not here to defend his self so Wade should go sit is ass down!!!

528 days ago
230.

Pegasus    

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A look at key moments this past week in the wrongful death trial in Los Angeles between Michael Jackson's mother, Katherine Jackson, and concert giant AEG Live, and what is expected at court in the week ahead:


THE CASE:

Jackson's mother wants a jury to determine that the promoter of Jackson's planned comeback concerts didn't properly investigate Dr. Conrad Murray, who a criminal jury convicted of involuntary manslaughter for Jackson's June 2009 death. AEG's attorney says the case is about personal choice, namely Jackson's decision to have Murray serve as his doctor and give him doses of a powerful anesthetic as a sleep aid. Millions, possibly billions, of dollars are at stake.


— Jurors heard about Jackson in life and death from a pair of women who knew him and from coroner's officials who pieced together how he died. Jackson's mother skipped morbid testimony about Jackson's autopsy, but listened as her son's friend and makeup artist told jurors about watching him perform, and gradually become more dependent on prescription drugs.

— Jackson's longtime makeup artist Karen Faye testified that she overheard AEG co-CEO Paul Gongaware tell the singer's assistant to do "whatever it takes" to get the superstar out of a locked bathroom and to a rehearsal. Faye said Gongaware and another AEG official pushed Jackson to perform despite his emaciated appearance and signs of paranoia.


WHAT THE JURY SAW:

— A black-and-white photo of Jackson's lifeless body lying on a table before his autopsy. The image was shown in open court for less than a minute.

— Faye repeatedly break down in tears as she described how Jackson trusted his doctors but became more dependent on prescription medications in the early 1990s when he was on his "Dangerous" tour and facing his first bout of child molestation allegations.


QUOTABLE MOMENTS"

— "Michael would do five songs to the dancers' one. I never saw anything like it." (Makeup artist and hair stylist Karen Faye, describing Jackson's stamina and ability to put all pain aside while he was performing.)

— "When I hugged him, he just felt like marble. But when I hugged, when I saw him briefly in 2006, he didn't feel like that anymore. He felt thin." (Dancer and choreographer Alif Sankey, who contrasted Jackson's appearance and build when she met him while shooting the "Smooth Criminal" video with the final years of his life.)


OUTSIDE THE COURTROOM:

— Wade Robson, a choreographer who testified in Jackson's defense at his child molestation

trial, filed court paperwork stating that he was abused by Jackson over a seven-year period, according to his attorney. He has not stated how much he is seeking from Jackson's estate.

— A 20-minute preview of the Cirque du Soleil show "Immortal" based on Jackson's career and music was previewed at Las Vegas' Mandalay Bay hotel-casino. The show is scheduled to open June 29.


WHAT'S NEXT:

— Jurors will hear from AEG Live's first witnesses, a pair of choreographers who worked with Jackson and who will be called out of order to accommodate their touring schedule.

— Deputy Medical Examiner Christopher Rogers is expected to resume testifying and may offer an estimate of how long Jackson would have lived if he hadn't received an overdose of the anesthetic propofol.

527 days ago
231.

CrystalT    

So let me get this straight. He received money to keep his mouth closed and now he wants money for receiving money to keep his mouth closed?

526 days ago
232.

Pegasus    

Choreographer: No signs Jackson was ill in 2009

May 13, 2013, 7:56 PM EST

By ANTHONY McCARTNEY , AP Entertainment Writer

LOS ANGELES (AP) — An associate choreographer who worked on Michael Jackson's planned comeback concerts testified Monday that she didn't see any signs that the pop superstar was ill or might die in the final days of his life.

"I just never in a million years thought he would leave us, or pass away," Stacy Walker told jurors hearing a lawsuit filed by Jackson's mother against concert promoter AEG Live LLC. "It just never crossed my mind."

Walker, who is testifying for AEG, said Jackson appeared thinner than he had been in previous years and wore multiple layers of clothes while rehearing for his "This Is It" shows planned for London's O2 arena. She said despite Jackson missing multiple rehearsals, she was convinced based on his performances the last two days of his life that he was ready for the series of shows.

Her testimony was supported by Travis Payne, an associate director on the "This Is It" concerts. Payne, who rehearsed one-on-one with Jackson and helped craft the creative vision for the show, said he never saw signs that Jackson was ill or impaired in early preparations.

"I thought he was thinner than he was in the past, but I didn't have any reason to be alarmed," Payne said.

He briefly discussed Jackson missing rehearsals, but has not yet addressed Jackson's appearance in his final days. Payne resumes testifying Tuesday.

Walker said she attributed Jackson's multilayered wardrobe to a personal preference. She said she recalled one incident in which Jackson may have appeared groggy or drugged, but she said she couldn't remember whether she witnessed or heard about it from others on the show.

Walker was the first witness called by AEG in a trial filed by Jackson's mother, Katherine, against the concert promoter. Her suit claims AEG didn't properly investigate the doctor convicted of involuntary manslaughter in Jackson's death and that its executives missed signs that the singer was unprepared for the comeback shows.

AEG denies all wrongdoing, and contends Jackson hid his struggles with prescription drug addiction. Jackson died in June 2009 from an overdose of the anesthetic propofol, which he had been using as a sleep aid.

Previous witnesses have testified that Jackson was shivering, had to be fed by others and appeared unprepared while preparing for the "This Is It" shows.

Walker said she never saw any of that behavior, although she acknowledged that her job was to work with other dancers and not Jackson directly.

"I wasn't looking for things at the time," she said. "I wish I was."

Payne, however, worked with Jackson individually almost every day for the last three months of the singer's life. He ate lunches with Jackson, saying the star's appetite varied daily. The "Thriller" singer was able to perform many of his familiar dance moves, although they had to be modified because the singer was 50 years old and not as limber as he had been decades earlier.

He said Jackson was tired for some of the sessions and that "some days would be better than others."

A medical examiner who conducted Jackson's autopsy testified Tuesday that Jackson was not underweight when he died and appeared to be in excellent health.

Despite testimony from some witnesses that Jackson appeared emaciated, Dr. Christopher Rogers said the singer did not bear the signs of someone who was starving when he died.

Walker and Payne, who have worked with Jackson since the 1990s, were called Monday because they are slated to leave the country for work. The trial is expected to last several more weeks.

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Witness: 'Everybody was lying' after Michael Jackson died

By Alan Duke, CNN

updated 9:43 AM EDT, Mon May 13, 2013


The death in 2009 of superstar Michael Jackson, who died of cardiac arrest at the age of 50, sent shockwaves around the world. The death in 2009 of superstar Michael Jackson, who died of cardiac arrest at the age of 50, sent shockwaves around the world.

The Jackson 5 perform on a TV show circa 1969. From left, Tito Jackson, Marlon Jackson, Michael Jackson, Jackie Jackson and Jermaine Jackson.

Michael Jackson quickly became the stand out star of the Jackson 5. Here he performs onstage circa 1970.

Michael Jackson poses during a portrait session in Los Angeles in 1971.

Michael Jackson performs with The Jacksons in New Orleans on October 3, 1979.

Jackson achieved superstardom with his solo career in the 1980s. Here Jackson is shown on stage in Kansas in 1983.

Michael Jackson performs on stage circa 1990.

Jackson broke a world record during the Bad tour in 1988 when 504,000 people attending seven sold-out shows at Wembley Stadium in London.

Jackson perfoms in concert circa 1991 in New York City.

Known for his dance moves, Jackson is seen here jumping in the air while performing during the Dangerous tour in 1992.

Michael Jackson performs in Rotterdam, Netherlands.

Jackson performs with his brothers.

Jackson performs during the Bad tour at Wembley Stadium in London.

Jackson performs during the taping of "American Bandstand's 50th: A Celebration" in 2002.

Michael Jackson earned the Legend Award during the MTV Video Music Awards in Tokyo in 2006.


Michael Jackson, King of Pop

STORY HIGHLIGHTS:

"I can see Michael's heart beat through the skin in his chest," stylist says
"Get him a bucket of chicken," manager says
"It was such a cold response, it broke my heart," makeup artist says
Wife Debbie Rowe "was obviously in love with Michael," witness says

Los Angeles (CNN) -- The portrait of Michael Jackson in the last week of his life, painted by people close to him, is a disturbing picture of an emaciated man, unable to sleep or eat, and unlikely to be ready for his comeback concerts just days away.

"Oh, my God, Turkle, I can see Michael's heart beat through the skin in his chest," stylist Michael Bush said after a costume fitting six days before his death on June 19, 2009.

Turkle is the nickname of makeup artist Karen Faye, who testified Thursday and Friday in Jackson's wrongful death trial. Her testimony has been the most dramatic so far.

Proceedings continue Monday with choreographer Stacy Walker on the witness stand.


Katherine Jackson: Michael's mother, 82, was deposed for nine hours over three days by AEG Live lawyers. As the guardian of her son's three children, she is a plaintiff in the wrongful death lawsuit against the company that promoted Michael Jackson's comeback concerts.


Prince Jackson: Michael's oldest son is considered a key witness in the Jacksons' case against AEG Live, since he is expected to testify about what his father told him about the concert promoter in the last days of his life. Prince, who turned 16 in February, is becoming more independent -- he now has a driver's license and jobs.


Paris Jackson: Michael's daughter, who turns 15 on April 3, is on the list of witnesses and was questioned by AEG Live lawyers for several hours on March 21 about her father's death. Paris is an outspoken teen who often posts messages to her 1 million-plus Twitter followers.


Blanket Jackson: Although AEG Live asked the judge to order Blanket, 11, to sit for a deposition, and he is one of the four plaintiffs suing them, Michael's youngest son will not be a witness in the trial. His doctor submitted a note to the court saying it would be "medically detrimental" to the child.


Kevin Boyle: The Los Angeles personal injury lawyer is leading the Jackson team of at least six attorneys in the wrongful death suit against AEG Live. One of his notable cases was a large settlement with Boeing on behalf of two soldiers injured when their helicopter malfunctioned and crashed in Iraq.


Perry Sanders, Jr.: Katherine Jackson's personal lawyer is helping steer the Jackson matriarch through her relations with her son's estate, probate court and the wrongful death suit. He is also known for representing the family of Biggie Smalls in their suit against the city of Los Angeles over the rapper's death investigation.


Marvin Putnam: He's the lead lawyer for AEG Live, defending against the wrongful death suit. The primary focus of his legal practice is "media in defense of their First Amendment rights," according to his official biography.


Philip Anschutz: The billionaire owner of AEG, parent company of AEG Live, is on the Jacksons' witness list. He is the force behind the effort to build a football stadium in downtown Los Angeles to lure a National Football League team to the city. He recently pulled his company off the market after trying to sell it for $8 billion.


Tim Leiweke: He was recently fired as AEG's president as Philip Anschutz announced he was taking a more active role in the company. The Jackson lawyers say Leiweke's e-mail exchanges with executives under him concerning Michael Jackson's health are important evidence in their case.


Joe Jackson: Michael's father, 84, is on the witness list for the trial and may testify. The Jackson family patriarch, who lives in Las Vegas separately from his wife, has suffered several ministrokes in the last year, which some close to him say have affected him.


Randy Phillips: He's president of AEG Live, the concert promoter that contracted with Michael Jackson for his "This Is It" comeback shows set to start in London in July 2009. The Jackson lawsuit says Phillips supervised Dr. Conrad Murray's treatment of Jackson in the weeks before his death, making the company liable for damages. E-mails between Phillips and other executives showed they were worried about Jackson's missed rehearsals and sought Murray's help getting him ready.


Paul Gongaware: The AEG Live co-CEO worked closely with Michael Jackson as he prepared for his comeback concerts. He testified at Dr. Conrad Murray's criminal trial that he contacted the physician and negotiated his hiring at the request of Jackson. AEG lawyers say it was Jackson who chose, hired and supervised Murray. Gongaware knew Jackson well, having been tour manager for the singer in previous years.


Kenny Ortega: He was chosen by Michael Jackson and AEG Live to direct and choreograph the "This Is It" shows. Ortega, who choreographed for Jackson's "Dangerous" and "HIStory" tours, testified at Dr. Conrad Murray's criminal trial that "Jackson was frail" at a rehearsal days before his death.


Dr. Conrad Murray: He was Michael Jackson's personal physician in the two months before his death, giving him nightly infusions of the surgical anesthetic that the coroner ruled led to his death. Murray, who is appealing his involuntary manslaughter conviction, has sworn that he would invoke his Fifth Amendment protection from self-incrimination and refused to testify in the civil trial. There is a chance that Murray will be brought into court from jail to testify outside the presence of the jury to allow the judge to determine if he would be ordered to testify.


John Branca: He's one of two executors of Michael Jackson's estate. Branca was Jackson's lawyer until about seven years before his death. He said Jackson rehired him just weeks before he died.


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Mesereau: AEG arguments may backfire
"Get him a bucket of chicken," manager Frank DiLeo said in reply to concerns about Jackson's weight loss, Faye testified.

"It was such a cold response, it broke my heart," Faye said through tears.

Witness: Jackson was paranoid, talking to himself in last days

Michael Jackson's mother and three children contend concert promoter AEG Live is liable in Jackson's death because its executives ignored his health problem and pressured him to prepare for his "This Is It" shows set to debut in London in July 2009.

AEG Live negligently hired, retained and supervised Dr. Conrad Murray, who was convicted of involuntary manslaughter in the pop icon's death, according to the Jackson's lawsuit.

The coroner blamed Jackson's June 25, 2009 death on an overdose of propofol, combined with sedatives, given to him by Dr. Murray as a treatment for insomnia.

AEG lawyers contend that it was Jackson, and not AEG, who hired and supervised Dr. Murray, and that he was responsible for his own decisions. They said these were influenced by a drug addiction its executives did not and could not be expected to know about.

Witness: "Everybody was lying after he died"

The Michael Jackson the public saw in the do***entary "This Is It" -- produced months after his death with 80 hours of video shot during his last rehearsals -- is not reality, Faye said.

She was asked to help retouch the video to make Jackson look healthier on the big screen, she testified. But she refused.

"It was a lie. I didn't want to lie," Faye said. "Everybody was lying after he died, saying that Michael was well, and everybody knew he wasn't. I felt that retouching Michael was just a part of that lie."

Before Faye testified, jurors heard a similarly disturbing description of Jackson in his final days from "This Is It" associate producer Alif Sankey.

Jackson "was not speaking normally" at the June 19 costume fitting, Sankey said. She and producer Kenny Ortega cried after he left because of his appearance and what he said.

"God keeps talking to me," Jackson told Ortega, Sankey testified.

Faye said Jackson seemed "frightened," and he was talking to himself, repeating "the same thing over and over again."

"He kept repeating, 'Why can't I choose?'" she said.

Jackson was shivering from chills, and it was "like I was touching ice" when she put on his makeup, Faye testified.

Faye said she raised her concerns with AEG Live CEO Randy Phillips. He told her, "Yeah, this is bad. It's not so good. I had to scrape Michael off the floor in London ... because he was so drunk," she said.

The Jackson family's legal representation contends Phillips should have gotten Jackson medical care from someone other than Murray.

Sankey, who knew Jackson since she first danced with him in 1987, said she screamed at Ortega in a phone call after the June 19 rehearsal, begging that he get help for Jackson.

"I kept saying that 'Michael is dying, he's dying, he's leaving us, he needs to be put in a hospital,'" Sankey said. "'Please do something. Please, please.' I kept saying that. I asked him why no one had seen what I had seen. He said he didn't know."

Michael Jackson defender files sex abuse claim

Debbie Rowe was "in love with Michael"

The trial, which enters its third week Monday, could offer more previously unpublicized insights into Jackson's life and death.

Along with his oldest children Prince and Paris Jackson, his ex-wife and their mother, Debbie Rowe, is scheduled to testify.

Faye's testimony on Friday offered a glimpse at Jackson's relationship with Rowe, suggesting there was romance involved, or at least jealously.

Faye said that after she was fired from her job during Jackson's "History" tour in 1997, she learned it was because Rowe felt threatened by her relationship with Jackson.

"She was obviously in love with Michael," Faye said. "She had told me for many years that it was her desire to be with him."

Rowe later apologized to her for asking Jackson's manager to let her go, she testified.

"She told me she was jealous of me," Faye said. "She thought that Michael liked me better."

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Michael Jackson Remains A Global Phenomenon
Articles/
News


Michael Jackson Maintains U.K. Chart Dominance


Michael Jackson went from being Gary, Ind.'s most talented kid to one of the most recognizable human beings on the planet. And while his worldwide album sales were astounding, that wasn't the sole reason for his fame. his ascendancy went far beyond the cash register—he inspired dance moves, dictated fashion trends and raised awareness for social causes around the globe.



Billboard's Full continuing Michael Jackson coverage, including video, charts and more.


BRAZIL

Less than a day after Michael Jackson's death, the mayor of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, announced that the city would erect a statue of the singer in Dona Marta, a favela that was once notorious for drug dealing and is now a model for social development. The change was spurred partly by Jackson's 1996 visit to film the video for "They Don't Care About Us."

Jackson shot two videos for "They Don't Care About Us," the fourth single from "HIStory: Past, Present and Future, Book I": one in a prison and another in Dona Marta and Salvador da Bahia, a colonial Brazilian city known for its Afro-Brazilian culture and music.

When Jackson came to Brazil to shoot the video, directed by Spike Lee, Rio's local government became concerned that the singer would show the world an unflattering picture of poverty. At the time, Brazilians, like people the world over, saw Jackson as an idol. He'd been to the country twice before, once with the Jackson 5 in the '70s and again in 1993, when he played two concerts in São Paulo to 100,000 people each night.

At the time, the concert promoter Dodi Sirena recalls a "sensitive" artist who asked for an amusement park to be reserved for his use, then invited children from the poorest public schools. "He displayed great concern for everything in the country, with poverty, with street children," Sirena says.

In that context, Jackson's choice of locale for his video made sense. "The video is about the people no one cares about," says Claudia Silva, press liaison for Rio's office of tourism.

When Jackson shot the video in Rio, Silva was a journalist for the daily newspaper O Globo, but Lee and his staff had banned journalists from the shoot because Dona Marta drug dealers didn't want the attention. But Silva found a family that let her spend the night at their home and saw the favela residents washing the streets to prepare for Jackson's arrival. "The people were so proud," Silva says. "That was the best thing for me. People got up early to clean the area, they prepared for him, they took out the trash."

Jackson arrived by helicopter but walked the streets of Dona Marta shaking hands and distributing candy. "People were very surprised in the end, because they were expecting an extraterrestrial guy," Silva says. "And he was—it sounds strange to say this—a normal guy."

Jackson shot scenes in Salvador, alongside throngs of people, accompanied by the Afro-Brazilian cultural group Olodum. In the video, he can be seen dancing to the beat of hundreds of Olodum's drummers and with cheering fans who reach out to touch him—and at one point burst through security and push him to the floor.

"This process to make Dona Marta better started with Michael Jackson," Silva says. "Now it's a safe favela. There are no drug dealers anymore, and there's a massive social project. But all the attention started with Michael Jackson." --Leila Cobo


SOUTH AFRICA

"Growing up as a young black kid in a township, you either dreamed of being a freedom fighter or being Michael Jackson. It was as simple as that."

So recalls the leading South African R&B artist Loyiso Bala, whose five South African Music Awards are a testament to the fact that he chose to follow the King of Pop.

The 29-year-old likens Jackson's impact on his family—which includes his high-profile musician brothers Zwai and Phelo—to that of former President Nelson Mandela.

"The whole family would drop what they were doing and watch, mesmerized whenever Michael or [Mandela] came on," he says of life in his Kwa-Nobuhle township home, located outside the Eastern Cape town of Uitenhage.

Lupi Ngcayisa, a DJ on Metro FM, South Africa's biggest national urban commercial station, says Jackson's "rich lyrics changed the complexion of black radio."

"He forced black families to debate issues surrounding individualism and race, so his cultural impact here extended beyond simply the music," he says.

That impact was most visible in 1997 when the HIStory tour came to the country for a five-date run that ended Oct. 15 at Durban's King's Park Stadium, the performer's final full-scale concert in support of a studio album. The shows are still the largest the country has ever seen, attracting 230,000 people, according to Attie Van Wyk, CEO of the presenting promoter, Cape Town-based Big Concerts.

Equally notable for a country just three years into post-apartheid democracy was the audience mix. "Black and white, young and old, Michael drew a huge crossover audience that we still don't see often at shows," tour publicist Penny Stein says.

Duncan Gibbon, now strategic marketing director at Sony Music Entertainment South Africa, who worked Jackson's catalog as far back as the apartheid era, says Jackson sold more than 2 million albums in South Africa. More importantly, he says Jackson's music was a unifying point for a deeply divided society.

"South African radio was very racially segmented in the years before 1994," he says. "But Michael proved to be the one artist whose music was played on white pop stations and black R&B stations. It doesn't sound like much now, but it was a very potent thing when you think back to how apartheid attempted to keep everything about black and white society separate." --Diane Coetzer


CHINA

After 30 years of vilifying everything American, Beijing re-established diplomatic relations with Washington, D.C., Jan. 1, 1979, the same year Jackson released "Off the Wall." At the time, most of China was still clad in drab blue Mao suits, state-controlled radio was almost devoid of Western pop music and record companies had little distribution. But Jackson's music soon took root--with a vengeance.

Beijing-based musician Kaiser Kuo says that the only time he felt physically threatened during the volatile spring of 1989 was because of Jackson's popularity.

On June 3, 1989 -- just as pro-democracy students reached what would prove a fatal deadlock with the government in Tiananmen Square -- Kuo's heavy rock band Tang Dynasty was playing a show in Jilin Province, unaware it had been billed as "Michael Jackson's backup band." Realizing they'd been scammed, the audience "went nuts and burned down the ticket booth," Kuo says. "Jackson was just that popular."

For many in China, reflecting on Jackson means dredging up memories of that era of dashed hopes. Blogger Hong Huang lived much of her childhood in the '70s and '80s in the United States, where her father was a Chinese diplomat. "Back then, I thought nobody in China could be listening to Michael Jackson," she says. Yet Hong hosted three evenings of her late-night TV talk show "Straight Talk" about Jackson's death while the Chinese Internet lit up with discussion of his life and music. The top video-sharing Web site Youku.com has dozens of posts of Chinese youths moonwalking to his songs in black loafers, white socks and high-water pants.

Jackson's sales in Asia have been strong despite rampant piracy, according to Adam Tsuei, president of Sony Music Entertainment Greater China. Sony says that since 1994 it has sold about 1.2 million Jackson albums in Hong Kong and Taiwan. Jackson never visited mainland China, but Sony says it has sold about 300,000 albums there since 2002, although censorship has prevented the release of his entire catalog.

There had been unconfirmed reports that AEG Live planned to bring Jackson to China after his sold-out London dates. Instead, Shanghai warehouse manager Jin Hailiang says the 150 regular members of the local Jackson fan club he helps manage will host a party Aug. 29, Jackson's birthday.

"His music is so important because it's about love," he says, "and it makes us feel free to dance." --Jonathan Landreth


INDIA

For many people in India -- a market where international repertoire accounts for just 5% of physical music sales -- Michael Jackson is Western pop.

Alone among Western artists, his popularity isn't confined to English-speaking urban Indians. Among the country's rural youth his celebrity competes with Bollywood stars for one reason: his trademark dance moves.

"Anybody who dances well is compared with Michael Jackson," says Nikhil Gangavane, who founded India's official, 13,000-member Jackson fan club. "The moonwalk made Michael reach from the classes to the masses in India."

The way Bollywood appropriated Jackson's moves and style connected with Indian fans. "Actors, established choreographers, aspiring composers, kids in dance shows—everybody borrowed ideas," says British-born hip-hop star Hard Kaur, now a Bollywood star.

Indian actors, from Javed Jaffrey to Hrithik Roshan, say they were inspired by Jackson's dancing. And the southern Indian movie industry still uses Jackson-esque routines, thanks to the influence of dancers and choreographers like Prabhu Deva, known as "India's Michael Jackson" for his lightning-fast moves.

Jackson's recorded-music sales are also significant. Arjun Sankalia, associate director of Sony Music Entertainment India, says the 25th-anniversary edition of "Thriller" sold 15,000 copies. The album's initial release sold more than 100,000, according to Suresh Thomas, former branch manager of the southern region for CBS India—a joint venture between India's Tata Group and CBS America. "Bad," which had an inlay card translated into regional languages, sold 200,000. None of the totals include the millions of pirated versions that have been sold.

Jackson proved his popularity on the subcontinent with the one show he performed in India -- Nov. 1, 1996, at Mumbai's Andheri Sports Complex. A 70,000-seat sellout, it was organized by Shiv Sena political party leader Raj Thackeray to raise funds to provide jobs for young people in the state of Maharashtra -- and boost the party's popularity among young urban voters.

Jackson arrived at Mumbai airport Oct. 30 and was greeted by actress Sonali Bendre, who put the traditional Hindu "tilak" mark on his forehead. A motorcade escorted him to the concert, and he stepped out of the car several times during the journey to wave at the thousands of fans lining the streets between the airport and his hotel lobby.

Fans still remember. "Go to any village, any corner in India and you'll find everyone is familiar with the name Michael Jackson," Kaur says. "There is no musician who can replace MJ." --Ahir Bhairab Borthakur


JAPAN

There's big in Japan, and there's Michael Jackson.

Fans ranging from teenagers to 50-somethings -- many dressed in Jackson's trademark outfits—staged an impromptu candlelit memorial June 27 in Tokyo's Yoyogi Park. While some showed off dance moves and sang songs, others wept openly and prayed at makeshift altars.

"It's funny," one attendee said. "The gathering at [Harlem's] Apollo Theater was like a celebration of his life, but Japanese people go straight into mourning."

Jackson won over Japan like few Western stars before or since. Famous in the country since the release of "Off the Wall," he became even bigger in 1987, when he started his "Bad" world tour at the Tokyo Dome. He sold out 14 shows, drawing about 450,000 fans and taking in an estimated 5 billion yen ($52 million). Hundreds of screaming girls greeted his arrival at Tokyo's Narita Airport, which was covered by 1,000 journalists; another 300 covered the arrival of Bubbles, Jackson's chimp, who came on a separate flight.

"No other performer had Michael Jackson's star power in Japan," says Archie Meguro, senior VP of Sony Music Japan International. "He was so loved for his talent, his music, his dance and his gentle soul."

Sony reports career album sales of at least 4.9 million for Jackson in Japan, making him one of the top-selling international artists. "Thriller" alone sold 2.5 million copies. But his impact went beyond sales. His 1987 tour helped reshape J-pop's choreography, as performers tried to appropriate his moves.

The news of his death caused such a stir in Japanese society that three cabinet ministers took the unusual step of commenting on his passing.

Sales of Jackson's catalog have spiked, and six of his albums made SoundScan Japan's Top 200 Albums chart. By the morning of June 27, Tower Records' seven-story flagship store in Shibuya had three displays of his albums and DVDs. Jackson had attended an event there in 1996, presided over by then-Tower Records Japan president Keith Cahoon. "The fan club members who attended were mostly young girls who shrieked ‘Michael!' in incredibly loud and high-pitched voices," he recalls, "and Michael replied in a soft voice that was nearly as high."

"Michael is the biggest entertainment influence on the Japanese people after the Beatles," says Ken Ohtake, president of Sony Music Publishing Japan. "He will always remain in the hearts of the Japanese people as an extraordinary and unparalleled artist." --Rob Schwartz

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Billboard - Michael Jackson Related Stories

http://www.billboard.com/artist/310778/michael-jackson

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Court urged to reject appeal of Michael Jackson doctor


Published May 14, 2013

Associated Press

Jackson AEG Suit_Cala.jpg


FILE - In this Friday, Oct. 21, 2011, file photo, Michael Jackson's former doctor Conrad Murray sits in a courtroom during his involuntary manslaughter trial in Los Angeles. Jurors hearing a civil case on Wednesday May 1,2013 against Jackson's concert promoter that Murray was more than $500,000 in debt and his finances were severely distressed. (AP Photo/Reed Saxon, Pool, File) (AP2013)


LOS ANGELES – The involuntary manslaughter conviction of Michael Jackson's doctor should not be overturned because there were no serious errors made by the judge overseeing his criminal case, a state attorney wrote in a filing urging a court to reject his appeal.

Supervising Deputy Attorney General Victoria B. Wilson wrote in a response Monday to Conrad Murray's appeal that the former cardiologist's own lawyers forfeited several opportunities to object to a judge's rulings in the case.


"The record shows that (Murray) was playing Russian roulette with Mr. Jackson's life over the course of several months."

- from the written statement of Supervising Deputy Attorney General Victoria B. Wilson


Wilson's filing also states jurors were presented overwhelming evidence that Murray's actions caused Jackson's death and his conviction should be upheld.

Rulings cited by Murray's attorneys as legal errors by Superior Court Judge Michael Pastor were not mistakes, but rather kept the jury focused on whether the physician was responsible for Jackson's June 2009 death, Wilson wrote.

Murray remains jailed after being sentenced to four years behind bars for providing Jackson with the anesthetic propofol, which the singer overdosed on in his bedroom.

"The record shows that (Murray) was playing Russian roulette with Mr. Jackson's life over the course of several months," Wilson wrote.

His attorney Valerie Wass appealed the conviction in April, arguing that Pastor erred by not allowing jurors to hear evidence about Jackson's troubled finances, his contract with concert giant AEG Live LLC, and by not sequestering the jury and allowing television coverage.

Wilson wrote that none of those rulings were errors, or would warrant overturning Murray's conviction.

"The argument is nothing more than the reflection of a criminal defendant who harbors no sense of responsibility or remorse for taking the life of a human being," Wilson wrote.

"Of course I disagree," Wass said Monday night. "I believe there were serious errors made."

She said Wilson's filing didn't address her argument that the prosecution theory about how Jackson overdosed was incorrect and how additional forensic testing could demonstrate that.

Wilson's filing however noted that Murray's three-person legal team had access to evidence in the case for months before the trial, and in some cases conceded they hadn't thought to raise certain issues.

Wass said she would raise what she said were omissions in Wilson's response in a subsequent filing.

Jackson's finances and his relationship with AEG and Murray are the subject of a civil lawsuit being heard at a courthouse down the street from where Murray was convicted. The case brought by Jackson's mother against AEG claims the concert giant failed to properly investigate Murray before allowing him to serve as a tour doctor, and ignored signs of Jackson's poor health.

AEG denies wrongdoing, and a deputy medical examiner who conducted Jackson's autopsy told jurors Monday that the pop singer appeared to be in excellent health when he died.

Allowing the criminal jury to hear evidence of Jackson's massive debts and pending lawsuits would have been a distraction, and a mistake, Wilson wrote.

Pastor was right to be concerned that presenting evidence of Jackson's financial troubles "would result in a salacious sideshow of Mr. Jackson's finances and lawsuits and run the risk of distracting the jury from its task of deciding (Murray's) guilt," she wrote.


Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/entertainment/2013/05/14/court-urged-to-reject-appeal-michael-jackson-doctor/#ixzz2TIekXUVB

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Jackson described as 'loopy' after doctor visits
Associated PressBy ANTHONY McCARTNEY | Associated Press – 1 hour 37 minutes ago...
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Related Content.
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.FILE - In this March 5, 2009 file photo, Michael Jackson announces several concerts at the London O2 Arena in July, at a press conference at the London O2 Arena. Stacy Walker, a choreographer who worked with Jackson in his ill-fated “This Is It” shows, told a civil jury in a Los Angeles courtroom on Monday May 13, 2013, that she did not see any signs that the singer was ill or might die in his final days and weeks. Walker is AEG’s first defense witness in a civil case filed by Jackson’s mother, Katherine Jackson, who claims the concert giant failed to properly investigate or supervise the doctor convicted in 2011 of causing the singer’s death. (AP Photo/Joel Ryan, file)View Photo.
FILE - In this March 5, 2009 file photo, Michael Jackson announces several concerts …

.FILE - In this June 23, 2009 handout photo provided by AEG, pop star Michael Jackson rehearses at the Staples Center in Los Angeles. Stacy Walker, a choreographer who worked with Jackson in his ill-fated “This Is It” shows, told a civil jury in a Los Angeles courtroom on Monday May 13, 2013, that she did not see any signs that the singer was ill or might die in his final days and weeks. Walker is AEG’s first defense witness in a civil case filed by Jackson’s mother, Katherine Jackson, who claims the concert giant failed to properly investigate or supervise the doctor convicted in 2011 of causing the singer’s death. (AP Photo/ Kevin Mazur, AEG/Getty Images, file) ** MANDATORY CREDIT. NO SALES, ARCHIVE OUT **View Photo.
FILE - In this June 23, 2009 handout photo provided by AEG, pop star Michael Jackson …



LOS ANGELES (AP) — Michael Jackson appeared "a little loopy" after visits with his longtime dermatologist and was considering using a teleprompter to help him perform some of his songs during his ill-fated comeback concerts, a choreographer who worked one-on-one with the pop superstar told a jury Tuesday.

Travis Payne said he expressed concerns to the director of the "This Is It" shows that Jackson might be misusing prescription medications and was exhibiting troubling signs of insomnia, weight loss and paranoia in his final days.

Some of the behavior occurred after Jackson's visits with dermatologist Dr. Arnold Klein, who Payne believed was performing cosmetic treatments on the singer so he would be comfortable performing onstage again.

"Sometimes in rehearsal, Michael would appear just a little loopy," Payne said, adding that the singer appeared to be "assisted or under the influence of something."

Jackson's condition and missed rehearsals led to talk within the last 10 days of Jackson's life that AEG Live LLC, which was promoting "This Is It," might cancel the concert series.

Payne was working for AEG and said he relayed his concerns about Jackson's possible prescription drug use to tour director Kenny Ortega. Jackson was struggling to get into shape for the shows, and Payne said his voice coach suggested using a voice track for fast-paced songs until the singer's stamina improved.

He said Jackson wanted to use a teleprompter during the shows as "extra security," but it was an aid the performer had not used in his two previous tours.

The choreographer testified for AEG, which is being sued by Jackson's mother. Katherine Jackson claims AEG failed to properly investigate Conrad Murray, the doctor who was convicted of involuntary manslaughter for Jackson's death, and that the concert promoter also missed or ignored signs of Jackson's poor health.

AEG denies it hired Murray and claims Jackson was private about medical treatments and hid the depths of his prescription drug addiction. Jackson died from an overdose of the anesthetic propofol, which Murray was giving him as a sleep aid.

The company also did not hire the dermatologist, Klein.

Klein is listed as a potential witness in the case, but it's unknown whether he will testify. His treatment of Jackson, which included Demerol shots, has been scrutinized both during Murray's 2011 criminal trial and the current civil case.

Under cross examination, Payne acknowledged that some of Jackson's behavior, including grogginess, lethargy, insomnia and occasional paranoia, were possible symptoms of prescription drug abuse. He also said that despite testifying earlier that he worked with Jackson one-on-one five days a week, he couldn't recall how many rehearsals the singer actually attended.

Payne's testimony was similar to two plaintiff's witnesses, dancer Alif Sankey and makeup artist Karen Faye, who testified last week that Jackson was in poor health and paranoid in the weeks before his death and they alerted Ortega about it.

"You could sense that something was wrong, you just didn't know what it was?" plaintiff's attorney Brian Panish asked. Yes, Payne replied.

The choreographer had remained composed throughout most of his testimony, occasionally smiling and politely trying to answer questions. But after several hours of testy exchanges with Panish, his voice quivered and he dabbed his eyes with a tissue.

"I don't have a dog in this race," Payne said at one point. "I'm just trying to have a conversation with you and tell the truth."

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Los Angeles Times
Tuesday, May 14, 2013

8:08 p.m. PDT
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Jackson too incoherent to take the stage, choreographer says


Michael Jackson
Michael Jackson rehearses in 2009 at Staples Center for his ill-fated This Is It shows. (Kevin Mazur / Associated Press / June 23, 2009)


By Corina Knoll
May 14, 2013, 6:59 p.m.

During preparations for his anticipated “This Is It” performances in London, Michael Jackson at times seemed “under the influence of something” during rehearsals and once couldn’t take the stage because he appeared incoherent, the pop singer’s choreographer testified Tuesday.

Travis Payne, who worked with Jackson on his Dangerous and HIStory world tours and was back aboard for the comeback concerts, said Jackson had trouble picking up some of the show’s choreography and requested a teleprompter to help him with lyrics — something the singer had never done before.

Payne said he was aware that Jackson had problems sleeping and chalked up the singer’s sometimes erratic behavior to sleep aids or sedatives from his dermatologist visits.

“You have to understand that one always says hindsight is 20/20,” he said. “In the moment I had no inkling of what, ultimately, what was revealed until Mr. Jackson’s passing.”

Payne also testified that Dr. Conrad Murray lacked a certain authenticity despite being tasked with providing Jackson with whatever he needed to rehearse for his upcoming comeback concert series.

“My understanding was that Dr. Murray was to provide whatever the artist needed as far as nourishment, the ability to rest well, so he could have productive rehearsals,” Payne said.

But something about Murray felt off, Payne said. “He didn’t feel like an official doctor,” he said.

Although Murray is serving jail time for involuntary manslaughter, his role in Jackson’s 2009 death has resurfaced in the wrongful death civil suit the music legend’s mother, Katherine, and three children brought against concert promoter AEG.

In the trial that began more than two weeks ago and is expected to last four months, the Jacksons accuse AEG of negligently hiring and controlling Murray, who administered the fatal dose of propofol to Jackson.

AEG attorneys were allowed to interrupt the plaintiff’s case to accommodate the traveling schedules of a couple of their witnesses, including Payne.

Some of Jackson’s rehearsals were rocky enough that the process frustrated many involved with the show, which AEG considered canceling in mid-June, Payne said. “It was, we’ve got to get this together or the plug may get pulled.”

Still, Payne said Jackson’s performances in the final days of his life were impressive, and it felt “like we were definitely on an upswing.”

“I never doubted Michael because he was the architect of this and he wanted to do it, so part of my responsibility was to help him get there,” Payne said, his voice racked with emotion.

The belief in Jackson’s legacy as a performer coupled with hesitation about his health has been a running theme of the trial. On Tuesday, an email from “This Is It” band director Michael Bearden to Ortega and Payne was shown to the jury.

“MJ is not in shape enough yet to sing this stuff live and dance at the same time," Bearden wrote June 16, 2009, a little more than a week before Jackson's death. "He can use the ballads to sing live and get his stamina back up, once he’s healthy enough and has more strength I have full confidence he can sing the majority of the show live.”

Dismissed as a witness after spending the entire day on the stand, Payne nodded to Katherine Jackson and her daughter Rebbie as he exited the courtroom. “God bless you,” he said.

Later, a group of Jackson fans clapped for the family’s attorneys as they walked down the hallway

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Debbie Rowe Attempts To Reconcile With Prince Michael Jackson

Posted on May 15, 2013 @ 3:18AM | By radarstaff

Paris, down. Prince, next.

Michael Jackson‘s ex-wife, Debbie Rowe, has reached out to her biological son, 16, in an attempt to reconcile after years of estrangement, RadarOnline.com has learned.

Rowe – who was married to Jackson from 1996 to 1999 – recently invited Prince Michael to join his sister, 15, at her Palmdale, Calif., ranch, about an hour outside Los Angeles.

“Debbie is anxious to spend some quality time with Prince,” a family insider told RadarOnline.com.

PHOTOS: Paris Jackson Shares Images From Her Schoolgirl Life

“She personally made the invitation to Prince for him to go up to Palmdale at her ranch. The ranch is the perfect place for mother and son because it offers privacy from prying eyes.”

However, “Prince made it known that he isn’t ready to hang out with his biological mother — just yet.”

Said a source: “He is open to the idea, but wants to do it on his terms, which Debbie understands and fully supports.”

The insider added that Prince Michael “just doesn’t feel that he needs a mother figure in his life right now because he has his grandmother and aunt LaToya.”

PHOTOS: Paris Jackson Is Getting More Gorgeous By The Day

As RadarOnline.com previously reported, Paris and her mother have bonded over recent weeks — so much so, she told her 83-year-old grandmother Katherine that she plans on spending a large chunk of her summer vacation at the ranch, where Rowe breeds horses.

“She might go to summer school for the first month of vacation, but will be with Debbie on the weekends and plans on being with her mom in July and August,” a source said.

“Paris wants to spend as much time as possible with Debbie and this is the perfect time.”

Rowe gave her pop star husband sole custody of the children in the divorce.

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Music News

Michael Jackson in 2006
© AP / Michael Jackson


Michael Jackson planned lip-syncing and body double for live comeback

May 15, 2013, 7:40 AM EST

WENN

Michael Jackson's ill-fated comeback shows in London would have featured a lookalike onstage and lip-syncing from the legendary performer.

Bing: Jackson, AEG trial continues

The singer was booked for a string of 50 sell-out shows at London's O2 Arena in 2009 but passed away in June that year just weeks before the run of gigs was due to begin.

The star's mother Katherine has brought a wrongful death lawsuit against bosses of concert promoters AEG Live, who were behind Jackson's "This Is It" shows, alleging they were negligent in ignoring her son's life-threatening health issues as he was not well enough to perform.

Now the hearing in Los Angeles has been told Jackson was so out of shape he planned to lip-sync some songs and use an auto-cue machine to prompt him on his lyrics. A jaw-dropping stunt in which Jackson appeared to leap through a pane of glass would have featured a lookalike to fool fans.

Choreographer Travis Payne told the court on Tuesday he received an email from another worker on the This Is It shows stating: "Michael Jackson is not in shape enough yet to sing this stuff live and dance at the same time."

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