With one battle down, another is already brewing. CNN reports that the family and estate of Michael Jackson have expressed outrage against cable network MSNBC for planning to air a documentary about Conrad Murray, entitled Michael Jackson and the Doctor: A Fatal Friendship.
Jackson's family and executor of his estate feel the film gives Murray, recently convicted for involuntary manslaughter for his part in Jackson's death, a platform to speak "without fear of cross-examination" in order to "shift the blame post-conviction to Michael Jackson, even though a jury considered the evidence and rejected this very argument."
In a scathing letter sent to MSNBC and it's parent companies NBC Universal and Comcast Networks, co-executors of Jackson's estate, John Branca and John McClain, state, "The mere title of your 'documentary,'…is bewildering. Since when was Dr. Murray ever Michael Jackson's friend? Since when does any doctor — let alone any friend — act in such an irresponsible manner in the care and treatment of another human being?"
"It doesn't matter to us if it was a production company, Comcast, NBC Universal or MSNBC that paid for 'access' to Dr. Murray, because all are morally culpable," added Branca and McClain. "He is not someone NBC Universal should be giving a platform to on a prime-time pedestal," they wrote. "We demand that you exercise proper judgment and refrain from airing this program."
Jackon's siblings LaToya Jackson and Jermaine Jackson also expressed their discontent over the film. LaToya tweeted that she was seeking to "prevent this from being aired," her brother Jermaine Jackson hopes people will just ignore it.
"I choose not to give it attention/controversy it craves," he tweeted. "We've bigger battles to fight than against the meaningless words of a liar whose version of events was unanimously rejected by a jury."
Network honchos, however, don't seem to have plans to retract their plans to air the controversial film. Though they wouldn't comment on most of the allegations in the letter, a rep for the network did deny Murray was compensated for the documentary.
"NBCUniversal licensed the documentary from Zodiak Rights. In connection with the documentary, NBCUniversal had the opportunity to conduct a promotional interview with Dr. Murray. Neither Dr. Murray nor his legal defense were compensated in any way," said the cable net in a statement.
The special is slated to air Friday at 10 p.m.
(Photo: Toby Canham/GettyImages)
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