All Articles Tagged "Michael Jackson"
Just last week Dr. Conrad Murray was in the news again, discussing his very intimate relationship with Michael Jackson. We knew when reading the interview, though we were hanging on every word, that Murray had taken things too far. Sure, it seemed he was trying to clear his name and express just how close he and Michael really were during the last days of his life but he also revealed many of the secrets Jackson went through great pains to keep private. After catching wind of Murray’s comments, Jackson’s estate sent a notice, via e-mail and the postal service telling Murray not only were his comments cowardly and untimely, they violate the doctor-patient confidentiality laws. They warned that if he continues speaking out about Jackson he will face legal consequences.
In a notice, obtained by TMZ, sent to Murray via e-mail and U.S. mail, the estate writes:
“Your recent comments to the media about Mr. Jackson’s medical treatment and ultimate death shamefully violate the physician-patient privilege under California law. Despite your self-serving statements to the contrary, you clearly were not Michael Jackson’s “friend.”"
“It is beyond ironic and cowardly that after electing not to testify before the jury that convicted you, you are now trying to publicly defend your conduct by sharing supposed conversations you had with Michael Jackson and alleged details about Mr. Jackson’s medical condition and treatment.”
“If you continue to violate the oath you took when you were physician and persist in revealing privileged information (much of which appears fabricated) about Michael Jackson, the Estate will take all necessary and permissible legal action, which will include a lawsuit seeking to enjoin you from disclosing confidential information about Mr. Jackson in any future memoir or book (which you are reportedly attempting to shop.)
What did you think of Dr. Murray’s interview? Is the estate right to threaten him like this?
“I Held His Pen!s Every Night” Conrad Murray Talks Michael Jackson’s Sexuality, Kids, Plastic Nose & More
Over the weekend, we reported that Conrad Murray claimed, once again, that he didn’t kill Michael Jackson, that Michael accidentally killed himself. Murray has been saying this for years now. But this particular interview with The Mail, Murray had faaaaaar more than that to say. In the lengthy interview, Murray attempts to “clear” his name by describing the friendship he and Michael shared. And because the two were so close for the icon’s final years and Michael trusted him, he was privy to some of the most intimate details of Jackson’s life. And I do mean in-tim-ate. This interview answers many of the questions we’ve had about Michael Jackson for decades now, including why he was so adamant about bleaching his skin, the biology of his children, his sexuality and the abuse Jackson had suffered at the hands of his family and others he had once trusted. You can check out some of the highlights below.
Michael’s drug use
Murray says that when he initially went to work for Michael in 2006, he was already using propofol. When he came to his home to help him prepare for his comeback tour, he realized that Michael had a personal stash of the drug which Murray did not supply.
He told me there were doctors in Germany that gave it to him. I didn’t agree with this at all, but Michael wasn’t the kind of man you can say no to. He would always find a way.
So I acquired propofol and gave it to him over a two-and-a-half month period as I weaned him off it, which I finally achieved three days before he died.
I would never have recommended propofol to Michael.
But when I got there he was on it – he called it “milk” – and he needed to get off it. I wanted to help my friend.
How he and Michael were able to develop such a close friendship.
He liked me because I wasn’t starstruck. The children loved me. We shared similar backgrounds.
He had a very unhappy childhood and was beaten and abused by his father. I came from poverty and didn’t meet my father until I was 25. We were both forgotten little boys.
Michael had a lot of lingering pain. He would sing the song The Little Boy Who Santa Claus Forgot to me and say, ‘That’s our song.’
I protected him. I am only speaking now because I have been unfairly vilified.
He told me he believed he had been sexually assaulted by one doctor while he had been under sedation. You name it, he had experienced it.
The prediction Michael made that came true in a very tragic way.
You know, for the rest of your life and my life our names will become inseparable.
I asked him, “Michael, what do you mean?” and he smiled and said, I am clairvoyant.
Murray said Michael craved porcelain skin and he helped apply the cream he used. He rubbed it on Jackson’s back.
He transformed himself because he wanted to obscure where he came from. He wanted to look different from his family. He wanted porcelain, flawless skin. Those were his words.
More quotes about Michael’s children, his sexuality and the plastic nose on the following pages.
There is really something to be said for knowing when to humble yourself and be quiet. It is clear, however, that Conrad Murray has not learned that lesson.
In his first interview since being released from prison, Conrad Murray opens up to The Daily Mail about life with Michael Jackson. He says things got very crazy towards the end, but he was not responsible:
“He was in crisis at the end of his life, filled with panic and misery … By the end, Michael Jackson was a broken man. I tried to protect him but instead I was brought down with him.”
Murray says MJ was so paranoid that he wouldn’t allow housekeepers to clean his underwear because he thought they would sell them. Yes, well, drugs will make you think a lot of things that would rarely cross your mind if you were sober.
Murray says that he was only trying to protect Michael but was taken down with him. In fact, he says they were very close friends. How close, ask?
I held his private part every night to fit a catheter because he was incontinent at night.”
Yeah. Moving on.
In the end, Conrad Murray says he didn’t kill Michael Jackson but rather, Michael accidentally killed himself.
You know, the only real truth is that no one will ever know what really happened. It’s no secret that Michael had bouts of paranoia. But we also know that Conrad Murray isn’t the most trustworthy person.
No matter the “truth,” it is about time for everyone to stop doing interviews about this and keep whatever they know to themselves.
Lonnie Johnson, the mastermind behind the Super Soaker water gun, has been shortchanged by Hasbro on royalties for five years. Fortunately for Johnson, he came out victorious in the dispute and was awarded a whopping $73 million settlement, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports [h/t HipHopWired].
Johnson, a rocket scientist who works for NASA as nuclear engineer, is the founder of Johnson Research and Development Co., an Atlanta-based research and development company behind the Super Soaker and other Nerf toy guns. “He holds nearly 100 patents for his inventions and his background includes serving in the Air Force,” HipHopWired adds.
Johnson created the popular water gun back in 1982, the Super Soaker gained heightened visibility after Michael Jackson called it his favorite toy. In 1991, the Super Soaker, which was sold under the Larami Corporation, “generated over $200 million in retail sales and became the best selling toy in America,” according to Wikipedia. Hasbro then purchased the Larami Corporation — but since then, Johnson has had issues with the popular toymaker. Fed up with Hasbro’s games, Johnson filed a suit in February.
“After toymaker giant, Hasbro purchased all licensing for the historic water gun, contractal disputes arose. It was alleged that Hasbro skimmed out on royalty payments for five years, ranging between 2007-2012,” HipHopWired notes. Johnson also sued Hasbro for violating a 1996 agreement to pay the inventor “royalties of 2 percent for ‘three-dimensional products’ based on the appearance of the [Super Soaker] and 1 percent for ‘two-dimensional visual representations,’” AJC explains.
Lastly, Johnson accused Hasbro of selling water guns that were too similar to his invention and incorporated his own technology. The arbitrator ruled in favor of Johnson and forced Hasbro to pay him $72.9 million in unpaid royalties.
Johnson’s multi-million dollar toy isn’t his only brilliant invention. The Tuskegee University alumni, who holds a PhD, has also created “ rechargeable battery technology and thermodynamic energy conversion technology,” AJC concludes.
After being released from jail this week, Conrad Murray shared some very interesting thoughts for this first time as a free man on why he thinks Michael Jackson, of all people, would be “appalled” by the way he’s been treated by the singer’s fans and the justice system. Why? Because Conrad Murray says that Michael knows the truth, which is that Murray didn’t hurt him. Here’s what he had to say after being questioned by TMZ on what he would say to Jackson fans who blame him for the King of Pop’s death:
“First of all, I loved Michael very much, and I’m a fan of Michael probably more than most. And I was closest to him…especially in the last days of his life.
He would be appalled, absolutely appalled. I think he’d be stunned to see what has happened to me.
And to all the fans who have judged me the way that they have, I think that Michael would basically tell them to take a look in the mirror. Not that he doesn’t care about them, but I don’t think he would say that you should judge lest ye be judged. Michael knows the truth. I never harmed him. Michael loves me no less than he loved me then, and I know he loves me today, like I love him. He was a man of love like I am a man of love, and I’ll continue to give love. And for all of those who try to fester hate in their hearts? I’m not going to go there. I don’t need to do that. I will give love, I will give respect and I will remain dignified. And I would like to represent him as he should be represented.”
There are actually a large number of people who say that Conrad Murray shouldn’t have gone to jail in the death of Jackson, but rather, just had his medical license stripped. And then there are a large number of people who call him a murderer. Clearly Michael Jackson had a problem and Murray didn’t help him get the help he needed, but just enabled him (like many other people in Jackson’s life), but he’s served his time and is ready to get back to his life, which, as he says, includes giving a lot of love despite the hate that comes his way. What do you think of his comments?
Michael Jackson’s former musical mentor, Quincy Jones, has now sued Jackson’s estate. Jones claims he is owed millions in royalties and production fees on some of MJ’s greatest hits.
In his lawsuit Jones is seeking at least $10 million from the singer’s estate and Sony Music Entertainment, claiming the entities improperly re-edited songs to deprive him of royalties and production fees, reports The Huffington Post. The music was used in the movie This Is It and in a pair of Cirque du Soleil shows based on the King of Pop’s songs, according to the lawsuit.
According to Jones he should have also received a producer’s credit on the music in This Is It. His lawsuit is asking for an accounting of the estate’s profits from the works so that Jones can determine how much he is due.
The reknown producer worked with Jackson on three of his most popular solo albums, “Off the Wall,” ”Thriller” and “Bad.”
Jackson’s estate issued a statement that it was saddened by Jones’ lawsuit. “To the best of its knowledge, Mr. Jones has been appropriately compensated over approximately 35 years for his work with Michael,” the statement said.
An after-hours message that HuffPo left at Sony Music’s New York offices was not immediately answered.
Jackson’s mega hits “Billie Jean,” ”Thriller” and “Don’t Stop ‘Til You Get Enough” are among the songs Jones claims were re-edited to deprive him of royalties and his producer’s fee. His lawsuit states the producer’s contracts called for him to have the first opportunity to re-edit or alter the songs, in part to protect his reputation.
Image via WENN
Going under the knife in Hollywood has never been anything new. While some are open and honest with the work they’ve had done, other celebrities try to deny it ’til their death. Despite evidence showing otherwise, these celebrities have denied having plastic surgery.
Viewers instantly fell in love with NeNe Leakes and her bold personality when Bravo’s “Real Housewives of Atlanta” reality show premiered in 2008. The sudden rise in popularity also caused a rise in her bank account and soon NeNe was debuting a brand new look. After first copping to getting some pearly white veneers, the “Glee” co-star revealed all of the work she had done, including a nose job, liposuction, breast reduction and breast lifting. So when she appeared on Bethenny Frankel’s show last month, NeNe had viewers scratching their heads by denying she had any plastic surgery. Frankel herself had to get up and perform her own inspection to see if NeNe was telling the truth or not.
Falling under the category of “Strange Lists That Are Creepy and Interesting,” we have the list of top earning dead celebrities. And topping that list latest list from Forbes is the King of Pop Michael Jackson. With $160 million, Jackson brought in more than Liz Taylor, who was the top earner last year, who earned $25 million, coming in at number four, and Elvis, who came in second place with $55 million. Rounding out the top five were Charles Schulz, the Peanuts creator with $37 million, and Bob Marley, in fifth place with $18 million. Also on the list are Einstein, Marilyn Monroe, Bruce Lee, and list newcomer Mexican singer Jenni Rivera, who died in a plane crash in 2012 and brought in $7 million.
Last year, MJ was in second place. Two successful Jacko-inspired Cirque du Soleil shows boosted him to the top. Jackson actually earned more posthumously than the top earning living celebrity, Madonna, who earned $125 million between June 2012 and June 2013. MJ died in June 2009.
Even though he’s gone, Jackson’s songs and his Sony/ATV collection continue to bring in cash. That collection includes tracks from singers like Lady Gaga and Taylor Swift.
Jackson’s mother Katherine just recently lost a case against AEG Live, the company that had been working on Jackson concert series that was set to start shortly after his death. The case alleged that AEG was negligent in its hiring of Dr. Conrad Murray, who is now in jail over the overdose that caused Jackson’s death. During the wrongful death trial, experts testified that Jackson could have could have earned $1.1 billion or more if he had lived.
All of the celebs on the list continue to earn from the iconic things they created while they were alive. For instance, White Diamonds perfume continues to be a moneymaker for Liz Taylor. The Peanuts characters continue to be popular enough to keep Schultz at number three. Bob Marley’s name is attached to a beverage company and a lifestyle and audio business. And Marilyn Monroe’s image has inspired spas, ads, and more.
Being a famous celebrity isn’t always about popularity and fortune. Sometimes, it entails battles with the law over money, criminal allegations and scandal. Bouncing back from these legal issues, these celebrities have made a significant career strides after problems that could’ve shelved their careers for good.
Taxing a dead man? Well, kind of. The Internal Revenue Service is trying to figure out just how much the image of Michael Jackson is worth.
“There’s a big disparity over Jackson’s image, as well as his recording legacy. The late singer’s estate said the taxable value of his image and likeness was $2,105 — while the IRS says it’s more like $434 million. The estate’s stake in Jackson’s recording assets was valued at $469 million by the IRS, but was not even included in a 2009 estate filing,” reports CNBC.
And get this, the IRS claims the Michael Jackson estate owes $702 million in federal taxes, plus penalties, according to charges the agency brought in U.S. Tax Court.
The agency claims the estate has undervalued the late “King of Pop’s” assets, amounts they charge were not disclosed in a court challenge the estate filed in July, as a response to a bill from the IRS.
But according to Alex Raskolnikov, a professor at Columbia Law School, who specializes in tax law, there is no exact formula the IRS uses to determine the value of assets. “When there is an audit and a valuation of substantial assets (over $50,000), they will use a panel of experts,” he told NBCNews.com.
When Jackson died on June 25, 2009, he left his estate to his mother Katherine, his three children and various charities. At the time, his estate was valued at $7 million, for tax purposes. The IRS disagrees. It said that was deficient by $505.1 million, plus penalties of $196.9 million.
A spokesperson for the Jackson estate told Reuters that the IRS figures were “based on speculative and erroneous assumptions unsupported by the facts or law.”
Thus far, the Jackson estate has covered $100 million in taxes.