Oprah Winfrey hosting ‘After Neverland’ special
Oprah Winfrey will sit down with the two men at the center of an already controversial Michael Jackson documentary set to debut on HBO next week.
“Oprah Winfrey Presents: After Neverland” will be a conversation with Wade Robson and James Safechuck, the subjects of the two-part documentary “Leaving Neverland.”
The film examines disturbing claims by Safechuck and Robson that Jackson sexually abused them over a period of several years when they were children.
The pair, along with the project’s director Dan Reed, will appear “before an audience of survivors of sexual abuse and others whose lives have been impacted by it,” according to HBO and Winfrey’s OWN network, who are partnering on the special. (CNN and HBO share parent company WarnerMedia.)
“Leaving Neverland” first screened at the Sundance Film Festival and revived conversation about whether Jackson was a predatory pedophile.
Jackson’s family has denied the allegations and condemned the documentary, calling it a “public lynching,” and Jackson’s accusers “admitted liars,” in reference to sworn statements made by both Safechuck and Robson while Jackson was alive that he did not molest them.
Robson made statements in support of Jackson to investigators first in the ’90s and testified in support of Jackson at his 2005 trial, where he was acquitted of child molestation and related charges. Safechuck at one point also denied he was molested by Jackson to investigators.
The two filed separate civil lawsuits against Jackson’s estate that were dismissed on technical grounds and remain under appeal.
The Jackson estate has filed a suit against HBO over the documentary.
In 2010, Winfrey broke ground when she, director Tyler Perry and 200 men came together as survivors of childhood sexual abuse on her daytime talk show.
She also famously interviewed Jackson in 1993 at his Neverland ranch.
The special debuts simultaneously on HBO and OWN at 10 p.m. EST on March 4, immediately following the conclusion of part two of “Leaving Neverland,” which will air on March 3rd and 4th on HBO.