2 New Zealand Radio Stations Drop Michael Jackson Music After 'Leaving Neverland'
In the wake of HBO’s Leaving Neverland documentary focusing on child-molestation accusations against pop star Michael Jackson, some radio stations have begun to remove the artist's songs from rotation. On Monday, three Canadian stations pulled the plug on MJ after the controversial series aired over the weekend. Now, two New Zealand stations have followed suit.
MediaWorks and NZME have said they will not play Jackson’s songs at this time.
The film has struck a chord due to graphic accusations by two men -- Wade Robson and James Safechuck -- who detail the abuse they reportedly suffered while spending time at Jackson’s Neverland ranch as children in the '90s.
In an interview with Magic Talk, MediaWorks content director Leon Wratt said of the decision, “We aren't deciding whether Michael Jackson is guilty of pedophilia; we're just making sure our radio stations are going to play the music people want to hear."
An NZME representative is quoted saying, “NZME station playlists change from week to week, and right now Michael Jackson does not feature on them."
Speaking with UK paper The Telegraph, Leaving Neverland director Dan Reed said, "[The] lie that Jackson perpetrated while he was alive that he was a great defender and supporter of children -- and the ferocity with which his business associates and his family have defended him -- mean that his fall will be that much harder."
Leaving Neverland is now available on HBO.