Leaving Neverland director condemns Dave Chappelle’s ‘revolting’ jokes about Michael Jackson accusers: ‘I felt physically sick’

Documentary filmmaker responds to comedian’s controversial stand-up special on Netflix

Ellie Harrison
Monday 16 September 2019 09:43
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Trailer for new HBO documentary about Michael Jackson abuse victims Leaving Neverland

The director of Leaving Neverland has described Dave Chappelle’s jokes about Michael Jackson’s accusers as “revolting” and said they made him feel “physically sick”.

“Chappelle is riding on a wave of being contrarian, being controversial, and this, to me, was revolting,” said Reed after winning a Creative Arts Emmy on Saturday for Outstanding Documentary or Nonfiction Special.

He added: “I felt physically sick listening to what he was saying…

“You can make comedy out of so many other things. Why not do something brave instead of crapping on some victim of child rape?”

Leaving Neverland told the stories of James Safechuck and Wade Robson, who alleged they were sexually abused by Jackson as children.

In Chappelle’s stand-up special on Netflix, Sticks and Stones, he refers to those who accused Jackson of molestation as “mother***ers”.

“I don’t believe those motherf***ers,” he said. “Don’t watch it… It’s f***ing gross… really nasty s***...

“This kid got his d*** sucked by the King of Pop. All we get is awkward Thanksgivings for the rest of our lives. You know how good it must have felt to go to school the next day after that s***?”

Robson previously responded to Chappelle’s remarks saying he found them “disgusting, irresponsible and inexcusable”.

Jackson was investigated twice over allegations of child molestation. He was not charged in 1994, but he went to trial in 2005 and was acquitted on all counts.

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