HBO says they did not breach any deal they had with Michael Jackson when they released “Leaving Neverland.”
According to court documents obtained by The Blast, HBO is arguing why the $100 million battle with the Michael Jackson estate should not be heard outside the public court.
The estate has been pushing for their case to be heard in arbitration, which is a private court.
The crux of the estate’s argument is a 1992 deal HBO and Michael Jackson had over the airing of one of his concert specials, where there was a non-disparaging clause.
In their new docs, HBO says the original contract is very clear: any legal issues arising would not be heard in private court. They call the estate’s interpretation of the contract is “mere fantasy.”
HBO says “Leaving Neverland” only briefly mentioned the 1992 concert and had nothing really to do with the documentary. They also argue the documentary came out more than 25 years AFTER the termination of the 1992 agreement and “long past any reasonable period of time thereafter.”
They are asking for the court to deny HBO’s attempt to push the case to arbitration.
As The Blast first reported, MJ’s estate claims HBO violated a deal with Jackson when they aired the controversial documentary and are seeking up to $100 million in damages.