The two men who accused Michael Jackson of sexually abusing them as children in the documentary Leaving Neverland have stopped using social media, according to its director.
In the film, Wade Robson and James Safechuck reiterated allegations they made in failed lawsuits that Jackson groomed and abused them as children.
After the documentary premiered in January, Jackson fans and his family slammed the pair as liars, and Leaving Neverland’s director Dan Reed has now claimed that Robson and Safechuck no longer look at Twitter or other social media due to the criticism.
He told The Guardian “there is no point” to Twitter and insisted the pair have stopped using their social media accounts as it helps them to keep calm.
“I’m amazed at how serene they’ve been through all this,” he said. “But the movie has been good for them: they feel like their story has been told and entered the public conversation. I think people who saw the movie found Wade and James very credible.”
Reed was shocked by the reaction to the movie, which included fans taking out advertisements, funding their own documentary, and Jackson’s estate suing HBO, the network which broadcast Leaving Neverland.
“As soon as the movie was announced, people were denouncing the victims without even knowing who they were. It was just a kneejerk reaction: these guys are liars,” the filmmaker stated. “And you can’t challenge them with facts because it’s an article of faith for them and any challenges to that belief are blasphemy.”
However, Reed noted that he doesn’t want people to stop listening to the Billie Jean hitmaker – just to hear the allegations.
“I’m not about cancelling Jackson,” he explained. “But I think people should know that he was, at times, a monster to children.”