CONTENT WARNING: This article discusses sexual abuse.

The first trailer for the HBO documentary Leaving Neverland has been released, featuring partial testimony from two men who allege they were molested as children by pop superstar Michael Jackson at his Neverland compound.

The two-part documentary film, which is slated for its international broadcast debut next month, focuses on interviews with James Safechuck and Wade Robson, who both spent time at the musician’s ranch as children.

Jackson was acquitted of molesting 13-year-old boy Gavin Arvizo at Neverland after a highly publicised 2005 trial. Despite prosecutors alleging at the time Robson had also been molested, he testified Jackson never abused him.

Robson laid public allegations of Jackson’s abuse after the star’s death in 2009. In the new trailer, Robson said “I want to be able to speak the truth as loud as I had to speak the lie, for so long.”

The film has faced scrutiny before its release from fans who maintain the Thriller singer had a deeply unusual but ultimately harmless relationship with children.

In addition to some of those fans mobbing the film’s IMDb page, Jackson’s estate also provided a ten-page letter to HBO CEO Richard Plepler disputing the claims of Safechuck and Robson.

Director Dan Reed has backed the factual accuracy of the film, which Rolling Stone reports left audiences “shellshocked” after its Sundance premiere.


If you would like to talk to a counsellor about rape, sexual assault or domestic violence, give the people over at 1800 RESPECT a call on 1800 737 732.

Image: HBO