The $100 Million legal battle between Michael Jackson’s estate and HBO has been ongoing since the release of Dan Reed’s ‘Leaving Neverland’ documentary earlier this year. The lawsuit, filed in February, takes aim at the network for what the estate believes is a “reprehensible disparagement” of the late singer and his legacy.
According to Deadline, HBO is now trying to stop to a shift within the legal proceedings. The network says ‘Leaving Neverland’ is a representation of their First Amendment rights. In addition, they believe the estate’s highlighting of a 1992 contract related to a concert special does not constitute a valid argument.
Attorneys from Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher stated in court documents, “Petitioners’ effort to ‘publicly’ arbitrate these issues appears to be part of a transparent effort to bolster their publicity campaign against the documentary, but that undertaking is as poorly conceived as the claims themselves.”
Michael Jackson’s estate co-executor, John Branca, said they are also considering possible legal action against ‘Leaving Neverland’ director Dan Reed, but documents have yet to be filed.