A follow-up to Michael Jackson documentary Leaving Neverland is being made
The sequel will focus on the legal wars that followed the original film
A follow-up to Leaving Neverland, the controversial documentary about the child sex allegations against Michael Jackson, is currently being filmed.
Deadline reports that director Dan Reed has been filming in the Los Angeles Superior Court following Wade Robson and James Safechuck, the subjects of Leaving Neverland.
Wade Robson and James Safechuck both claim that they were sexually assaulted by Michael Jackson when they were children.
Robson and Safechuck are now pursuing separate claims against MJJ Productions and MJJ Ventures. The footage Dan Reed is shooting is to be used in a follow-up film for Channel 4.
Deadline reports that MJJ Productions and MJJ Ventures have tried to entangle Reed in the legal proceeding.
According to Deadline, Jacksons' companies have served Reed and his production company with "subpoenas demanding that he personally appear for deposition and hand over documents and materials related to Leaving Neverland and the sequel." This was followed by "Jackson’s attorneys filing a brief in which they attempt to discredit Reed, persuade the court that he is not a legitimate journalist, and portray Leaving Neverland as one-sided."
Reed responded with a motion to quash the subpoenas, saying that he is a UK resident and his production company is not based in California.
"The follow-up documentary for which I am currently filming in these cases is about current events taking place partly in public view and will be an unfolding narrative with multiple points of view," said Reed.
Channel 4’s head of news and current affairs Louisa Compton has defended Reed and the new film.
"At Channel 4 we have a robust record of defending freedom of expression," she said in a statement to Deadline. "We routinely oppose those who seek orders for journalists to hand over unbroadcast and other journalistic material, grateful for the strong legal protections that exist to protect journalists in the UK and the US."
2019's Leaving Neverland was a co-production between Channel 4 and HBO. The film follows the stories of two men, Wade Robson and James Safechuck, who were befriended by Michael Jackson as children, and claim that the singer sexually assaulted them.