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The Debate With a Hollywood Producer: MICHAEL JACKSON, PROJECT M and STEVEN SPIELBERG

March 15, 2020

The previous post was about a debate between a Hollywood producer scornful of Michael Jackson and our reader ‘luv4hutch’ who sent us the text of their discussion and asked for a comment; and also some facts regarding the role of David Geffen in the life of Laura Nyro and Donna Summer, same as Michael Jackson’s.

The ruin of their careers revealed exactly the same modus operandi and is pointing to the same person in their immediate surrounding who put a hand to their destruction.

Here is the continuation of the debate and we begin where we left off – with David Geffen, of course and Project M on making a Peter Pan movie supposedly with Michael Jackson in the main role. The whole thing was a fake as it was never meant to be realized, but the scheme was elaborate and multi-task and resulted in putting the blame for its failure on Steven Spielberg which put an end to his friendship with Michael Jackson.

My interest in the debate is the frame of mind of people in Hollywood, and getting new facts, if any, to further clarify the picture around Michael Jackson then and now.

The reader Lu4hutch introduced his producer friend as follows:

“He is a good person, and we’ve done a lot of things together, especially creative writing projects. However, because of the extent of misbehavior in Hollywood, he is extremely jaded and cynical about everything and thus feels that everyone in the industry is fake and monstrous, so therefore Michael had to be, because “it’s not possible to be so cheery and naive and survive, especially if he truly was as innocent and helpless as he or his fans like to claim.”

He said that he knows for a fact was happening regarding “Hook”/”Project M” and that Michael was crowbarring his way in, not being strung along.”

The Producer’s vocabulary tells it all. Of course Michael Jackson was dying to make a Peter Pan movie as it was his lifetime dream, but if someone wants or even insists on something, it doesn’t mean that he should be strung along and deceived into thinking that his dream is finally coming true. And then be cynical enough to blame its inevitable end on someone else.

So the first thing I don’t believe is that the Producer is a good person. Cynics are never good. They judge others by their own standards which are too low for them to ever understand the innocent and the naive.

Reader: Geffen’s done far worse for people who’ve done less. He’s extremely petty. It wasn’t so much Michael turning him down alone, it was also that Geffen wanted him to leave Epic Records, but he never did. It’s also that Geffen continued to act as his friend, then betrayed him, undermining him, like the Spielberg “Hook” thing.

Producer: Michael was more interested, not very surprisingly, in the world-building eternally youthful part, not the “what if Peter Pan grew up” part. And even at a point when they’d already had serious discussions with Robin Williams, he was trying to convince them to go his direction. They told him to get a script drafted, but the chances of him actually getting his version made were slim to none. He and Spielberg were on two very different pages from the beginning. And it was one of many Peter Pan projects being shopped around at the time. A later business partner of Michael’s was helping develop a rock musical version of the story called Pandemonium (emphasis on the “Pan” – get it?) in that same era. It was to be set in the present, the Lost Boys were homeless kids who Peter sort of took under his wing when society cast them aside; it had a social justice angle that would be really popular today, actually.

This book and this article confirm that there was indeed a rock music version of Peter Pan story called Pandemonium but it was a Broadway musical and not ‘at that time’ but in 1987, three years prior to Project M. Pandemonium was to be set in the present, its main idea was to turn the three children in the original Peter Pan story into a trio of orphans who were abused children ‘trying to make decisions about their lives’ as its producers said. The message would certainly resonate with Michael Jackson, but since it was a Broadway musical I doubt that he could be involved.

Instead of Pandemonium the Producer could have mentioned a multitude of other Peter Pan projects one of which really belonged to Steven Spielberg and was almost ready to go into production in 1985, however he cooled to the idea and didn’t return to the subject until 1990.

Reader: Yes, I’m aware of all of that, but apparently Geffen strung Michael along around 1990 to say that “it’s different now” and was offering this as a serious project, and this Darlene Craviotto was a pawn in the game. First to act busy like this was happening, that Spielberg was doing what Michael wanted to do, and Disney and Jeffrey Katzenberg were part of it, then leave the news of “Oh, Steven’s left us and gone for a warring project at TriStar and Robin Williams.” Leaving Spielberg as the fall guy, and Geffen to look like Michael’s friend and protector. After all, the meetings Craviotto claims to have been at with Spielberg and Katzenberg appear to have actually been Katzenberg and Geffen, but the story is rewritten to again keep up Geffen’s narrative.

Producer: It wasn’t a warring project. It was the same project.

The timeline doesn’t support the Producer’s version. The timing of Hook and Project M was indeed close but still different. Darlene Craviotto was hired by Disney and began writing the script in mid February. She says that her first consultations with Michael Jackson were on February 21, 1990 (the night of the Grammys) and this was when Project M was already underway.

And Steven Spielberg learned of ‘Hook’ only in March when his former agent Medavoy took a job with Tristar/Sony/Columbia and sent him the script, after which Spielberg quickly committed to direct it. For five years prior to that Spielberg had no interest in the original version of the Peter Pan story – his mindset drastically changed when his son was born in June 1985 and since then Spielberg has focused on the family and not children separated from their homes.

Hook was being developed by Hart and director Nick Castle at TriStar when the Japanese electronics giant Sony bought Columbia-TriStar in 1989.

The following year, Sony hired Mike Medavoy to run TriStar. Medavoy, who had been Spielberg’s first agent, sent Hart’s script to Spielberg, who quickly committed to direct it.

[“Peter Pan on Stage and Screen, 1904-2010″]

So the projects were different in time and concept, and were devised by two different companies. In the summer of 1990 only ‘Hook’ went forward as the rights to produce the movie were with Sony/Columbia anyway and not Disney.

Thus Project M wasn’t a warring or same project – it was simply a fraud, a kind of an air balloon doomed to burst at the end of the party and meant to only create the impression of a competing (or same) project.

Producer: TriStar wanted Robin Williams and Spielberg’s approach, Michael had tentative not-very-strong interest from Disney in his. And it was the only reason they were humoring him. Film financing is hard even when you’re a heavyweight.

Reader: Yes, but again that’s part of what Geffen was feeding Michael, with his honeyed words of misinformation. And Disney was part of this scheme, even though Disney didn’t have the rights and the al-Fayed family had firmly snapped them up.

The Producer is indeed cynical through and through if he calls the Project M mocking trick just humoring Jackson and makes it sound like no big deal. I wonder how he will feel if his business partners encourage him to toil on his favorite project for four months and then drop it raising their arms in feigned despair, all the time knowing that it was a joke?

What really matters is that Michael Jackson was sure that the project was genuine. Michael was indeed naïve to think that David Geffen was acting on his promise to get him into the movies, which was how their friendship started at all (in mid-‘80s Michael even retained Geffen as his movie agent). And though by 1990 Geffen’s activity in this respect had brought zero result, Michael still didn’t find fault with him and let Geffen get a firm hold of his business affairs.

David Geffen [LA Weekly]

In the summer of 1990 Geffen’s power grab of Michael’s business was complete – John Branca was dismissed, Frank Dileo had long been fired and was replaced by Sandy Gallin, and Walter Yetnikoff of CBS/Sony/Columbia was on his way out for Tommy Mottola, loyal to the new team, to step in.

So though according to Darlene Craviotto only Jeffrey Katzenberg of Disney and allegedly Spielberg were involved in the Project M fake, David Geffen had to be part of it in any case – he was Michael Jackson’s main business advisor at the moment, especially in terms of the movies, not to mention the fact that Geffen’s office was at Amblin, the seat of Steven Spielberg and this was where the meeting on Project M supposedly took place.

Movie projects for Michael Jackson were also part of his new deal with Sony/Columbia arranged by the Geffen-backed team at the end of that year and this is why Michael regarded all of it as solid and genuine.

This is apparently why in 1990 he talked so much with the Robson family about his big plans of going into the movies. Joy Robson now blames Michael for not keeping his promises, though Michael didn’t promise anything but was daydreaming only, and was a victim of a big fraud himself.

And Michael was indeed naïve, because even the smartest people with an innocent frame of mind are naïve and trusting – they simply cannot imagine the depth of lows others are capable of, same as the other side cannot imagine anything different than their own cynicism and immorality.

To be able to survive in Hollywood one had to be their kind which Michael was not, and this is why he did not survive and had to live through the most part of his short life in a torturous and struggling mode.

AGREEMENT

The point I once again need to stress is that Project M was not mere fun created to humor Michael Jackson, but was a full-fledged business commitment that turned out to be just a cynical joke made at Michael’s expense with a side bonus of souring his relationship with Steven Spielberg.

Judging by the article sent to me by Darlene Craviotto, Project M was actually only part of Michael Jackson’s multi-project agreement with Walt Disney Co. taking place in February-June 1990.

The Los Angeles Daily News article below says that Disney agreed to develop five new Jackson-oriented attractions for their theme parks and three movies, as well as involve a trio of George Lucas, Francis Coppola and Steven Spielberg in the production of Project M.

Michael Jackson was also said to be in negotiations to change his label from CBS/Sony/Columbia for Disney Hollywood Records, their newly created music subsidiary.

The article I am talking about didn’t actually break this news but was reporting only on the ripples of the havoc created earlier by the Hollywood Reporter which was the only outlet to ever leak information about Project M.

The backlash against the Hollywood Reporter was harsh, immediate and amazing – the news was quickly retracted, the Disney executives went into complete denial, Darlene Craviotto was unavailable for comment,  disciplinary action was taken against the journalists who reported the story and an investigation was started to determine the identity of the person behind the release. And the icing on the cake was the accusation of the secretary suspected of the leak of ‘lying, cheating and misappropriation of funds.’

However the news looked absolutely true as the agreement in question was printed on Walt Disney Co. stationery and was published with the endorsement of a very-well informed Hollywood Reporter music editor Jeffrey Jolson-Colburn who also wrote for such outlets as Grammy Magazine, Rock Magazine, Woodstock and E! Online.

Now we know that Project M did exist and it was Disney’s reaction to the news that was phony, so we are inclined to think that there was at least a tentative agreement between MJ and Disney, only it was on paper only and its sole goal was imitating business activity around Jackson.

And considering that even the immediate staff involved in Project M was so intimidated that they were afraid to say a word, our Producer friend can know about this project only what he was allowed to know – no more, no less.

Unsolved mystery: Disney release

By Frank Swertlow

The hunt is on – not for “Red October’ but for the mystery person who issued a bogus press release announcing a new multimillion-dollar deal between Walt Disney Studios and Michael Jackson.

The release, issued Monday and reported as the lead story in the Hollywood Reporter Tuesday, was followed by a major retraction from the news publication Wednesday, and disciplinary action against the reported responsible for the story.

In the press release, issued on Walt Disney Co. stationery and clearly written by somebody familiar with Disney’s operation, it was announced that a “multiproject agreement” had been reached with Michael Jackson that included five new Jackson-oriented attractions for the Disney theme parks, a three-movie deal and a $50 million to 60 million flick to be produced by George Lucas, Steven Spielberg and Francia Coppola, tentatively titled “Project M.”

The release also said Jackson was negotiating to transfer his recording contract from CBS Records to Disney’s new Hollywood Records label. None of that was true.

A spokesman for Disney told Hollywood Freeway that an investigation is taking place to find the identity of the person behind the fake release. Asked whether Disney believed it originated within the company, the spokesman said: “I can’t really say. It was on company stationery. However, it didn’t real like a press release. It read more like someone’s idea of what a trade article would say.”

But whoever wrote the release was clearly familiar with Disney and film-industry personnel. Inquiries, for instance, were directed to Amanda Moore, a studio secretary, and the release named Darlene Craviotto (a screenwriter responsible for NBC’s 1985 movie “Love is Never Silent”) as the writer of “Project M.”

Craviotto was unavailable for comment, but her agents, the Lynn Pleshette Agency, expressed surprise at hearing about the reference to Craviotto within the release. Meanwhile, in a fax previously sent to the trade papers, Moore was accused of “lying, cheating and misappropriation of funds.”

Asked if she was the target of a disgruntled rival employee, Moore replied: “I don’t know. I really would rather not comment.” She also refused to speculate on who it might be. “I have no idea whatsoever,” she said. “I’m trying to get out of this loop.”

With the Hollywood Reporter issuing a retraction before Disney even asked for one, the matter seems to be closed – except for Jeffrey Jolson-Colburn, the reporter whose byline ran with the original story and who specializes in the music beat.  “There has been some disciplinary action taken against Jeffrey,” confirmed Teri Ritzer, editor of the Reporter, who declined to confirm reports that he had been fired. Beyond that, she told Hollywood Freeway, “I don’t have any other comment.”

The above is a specimen of a rare type of fake news when the truth is presented as a lie.

If our Producer still considers all of the above innocent fun, all I can say is that some people need to examine their conscience, while we can only register as fact the horrible lying machine Michael Jackson was facing and a betrayal awaiting him at his every step.

The Associated press, by the way, also reported the news about Project M in their piece dated March 1, 1990 and this places the Hollywood Reporter news right at the time when the Disney Peter Pan fraud was already in full swing while Steven Spielberg had not even begun working on his ‘Hook’ – another confirmation that the projects were different and not the same.

Disney Fuming Over Phony Report of Michael Jackson Picture Deal

SCOTT RECKARD March 1, 1990

LOS ANGELES (AP) _ The Walt Disney Co. scoured Hollywood on Wednesday for the source of a bogus news release that claimed moonwalking megastar Michael Jackson had signed a five-year movie deal with Disney.

Disney said it began an investigation to find the author of the release, used as the basis for a story in a trade publication. Among other things, the story said Jackson was negotiating to leave CBS Records for Disney’s new Hollywood Records and would design theme park rides for Disney.

″We fully intend to take action against the person or persons responsible,″ Walt Disney Studios Chairman Jeffrey Katzenberg said in a news release. ″This company has a reputation for protecting its name and taking legal action when necessary.″[ ]

Disney said the news release, typed on company stationery, was sent to several publications. Spokesman Ed Pine said it appeared to have been motivated by a personal vendetta against a Disney employee and said the hoaxer hadn’t been found, but refused to discuss the matter further. [ ]

The initial Hollywood Reporter story included a description of a movie that Jackson supposedly would make with Steven Spielberg, George Lucas and Francis Ford Coppola. The outer-space musical, tentatively titled ″Project M,″ was said to have a budget of between $50 million and $60 million.

Jackson stars at Disneyland in the 3-D movie ″Captain EO,″ which opened in 1986 and was produced by Lucas, Coppola and Jackson.

Full text: https://apnews.com/a853ae9c3914235c883ff741fa3a127a

Three film directors are mentioned again, so as of March 1, 1990 probably all of them were promised to Michael Jackson by the fraudsters with no particular name singled out yet, and this makes the story about Spielberg running Project M from its start even less plausible than we originally thought.

Actually the fact that someone is so keen on implicating Steven Spielberg in the ugly fraud and is so willing to turn him into a fall guy is another worrisome aspect of the story.

This is where we drop our Producer as there is a need to find out why and who is doing it to Spielberg.

STEVEN SPIELBERG

Steven Spielberg

Darlene Craviotto’s book was the first to leave a disquieting feeling that its target was not only Jackson but Steven Spielberg too.

Simple logic suggests that if we know the power players who stood behind the 1990 Project M and who suddenly permitted the scriptwriter to disclose the secret in 2011 (presenting it as genuine of course), we will have to ask why these power players decided to reveal this news at that particular moment and why Craviotto was directed to portray Spielberg as a villain who ruined it all.

The target audience of the book was millions and millions of Michael Jackson’s fans who could easily turn on Spielberg for his alleged pulling the plug at the last moment and treating Michael in so ruthless a way.

Fortunately this did not happen because the readers’ attention was diverted by a different matter – they were astonished by Darlene Craviotto’s sudden back-stabbing of Jackson and her insinuations about an innocent scene in his condo when at the end of May 1990 she came to read the final script for the fake movie and found Michael Jackson in the company of a Hollywood veteran Buz Kohan and ‘a boy from New Zealand’ (aka Wade Robson from Australia), which sent her running to her agent the next morning and tell him about her ‘suspicions.’

But even if we put the book aside another reason why Spielberg seems to be a target in this game of thrones is the regular outbreak of similar suspicions about him.

These rumors have been circulating at least since the time Corey Feldman began talking about pedophilia in Hollywood, but recently there was another attempt to accuse Spielberg.

It was in February 2018 and the website spreading the nasty rumor was ….. the facebook page of Wade Robson’s supporters.

The place and time where the rumor struck again are extremely telling, and actually help us to put all pieces of the puzzle together and tie all these strange events into one knot.

Because tell me who your friend is and I will tell you who you are. ©

And the same goes for your foes.

The rumor regarding Spielberg spread by Michael’s foes is a dead give-away of who is who in this situation, and what’s remarkable about it is that these people don’t even try to hide how much they hope to have the reputation of Spielberg ruined.

Here is an excerpt (I have the links but am not willing to post them) :

 Back when Steven Spielberg was in the talks to bring Peter Pan to the big screen reports of the day said Michael Jackson would be in the lead role. However the rumors of Michael Jackson’s inappropriate behavior with children were being made public and the idea of MJ as a man child on the Big Screen became not such a marketable idea.
So what about Steven Spielberg why would he ever have any sort of business or personal relationship with a man who had such questionable behaviors. The fact is that there have been many rumors about Stephen Spielberg’s strange obsession with children in his films. Some have claimed because of his high stature that if anything inappropriate happened it would never be made public. But it is now 2018 and the days of distant whispers are now becoming boisterous and public accusations of abuse.
I have a sinking suspicion that this story will become quite massive. I will keep you posted.

The above was accompanied by a filthy video address to Spielberg created by someone who introduces himself as an ‘entertainer’ whose videos ‘not always represent facts and evidence’ and ‘contain rumors, conjecture, and fiction’. The author’s disclaimer says that ‘certain situations, characters and events portrayed in my videos are either products of my imagination or are used fictitiously. Information presented in my videos may contain errors or inaccuracies.’

Calling one’s own videos trash is commendable of course, however the problem is that no one reads the disclaimer. Judging by the comment the viewers fell for the rumor, though the whole thing is screaming of provocation – the goal of these anonymous people is to spin the story out of thin air, send it around and make it massive until most people think that “there is no smoke without fire”.

Needless to say that the method is too familiar to those who know what was done to Michael Jackson and how.  

However it is exactly this easily recognizable modus operandi and the intensity of the effort that show that the campaign against Steven Spielberg is deliberate, the allegations are a lie and that the reason for trashing Spielberg can be only his quiet opposition to what is being done to Michael Jackson, and possibly his disapproval of other vicious games played in Hollywood.

Otherwise it will be difficult to explain why this particular rumor is being told about a person who has never given a reason to allege so horrible a thing about him.

Someone must be extremely worried that Steven Spielberg may tell the truth about the way things are done in Hollywood – about the phony Project M for example, and the role of various people in it, hence their attempt to neutralize him in advance by implying him to be a ‘partner in crime’.

The dirt thrown at Spielberg also has a strange regularity about it and surprisingly always coincides with the crucial periods in Michael Jackson’s life. Actually it is these coincidences that create the impression of someone deliberately restraining Spielberg from telling the truth as if saying to him, “See what will be told about you if you dare a comment?”

For instance, when the 1993 scandal broke out about Michael Jackson’s alleged misbehavior towards Jordan Chandler, a certain Adam Parfrey suddenly published a filthy piece about Steven Spielberg alleging the same about him and on totally absurd grounds.

Adam Parfrey

Adam Parfrey made a name for himself by publishing ‘the provocative, the vile and the perverse’ and his  fabrication about Spielberg is based solely on name-calling. The “Jurassic Park” movie is the “Pederastic Park” in the author’s opinion, and Captain Hook is the “the classically pederastic fantasy figure” where Spielberg allegedly “projects his own tendencies onto his villain, a strategy employed by Hitchcock and other directors renowned for their sadistic inclinations”.

The article is full of observations like “is it merely accidental that another pederastic magazine goes by the acronym P.A.N. (Paedo Alert News)?” and quotes a NAMBLA member whose phone number the author happens to know and who said: “A lot of the members have been talking about Hook, telling me how much they enjoyed it” – thus putting an equal mark between the director of the movie, millions of viewers who liked it and some perverts who will enjoy anything featuring young children, even innocent movies like ‘Beethoven’ or ‘Home Alone’.

Here is a sample of how Adam Parfrey opens up the deepest secrets of his own mind and projects his own tendencies onto Spielberg:

This garbage about Steven Spielberg is by Adam Parfrey

However, it was E.T., Spielberg’s most exalted triumph, which seems to clothe boy-love fantasy in New Age vestments. Spielberg uses every trick in the director’s chapbook to induce us to love a wrinkled, potbellied cosmic interloper that hides in boys’ closets and communicates with a glowing, phallic finger.

It was young Henry Thomas’s taunt to his twelve-year-old celluloid brother—”penis breath”—that had Spielberg conjure, if only for a disturbing instant, the image of a bald-faced lad with a cock in his mouth.

The above is a medical diagnosis, guys. Only a person with pedophilia inclinations is capable of interpreting a totally innocent movie in so horrid a way.

This garbage was printed in 1993, the crucial year in Michael Jackson’s life and has since been forgotten. However almost twenty years later somebody dug it out from oblivion, turned it into a pdf file and sent it circulating all over the Internet. And you know when exactly it happened?

It happened in September 2011, two months before the release of Darlene Craviotto’s book on Nov. 8, 2011 which among other things also targeted Spielberg and portrayed him in the most unfavorable light.

Incidentally both events took place half a year before Wade Robson made his first allegations against MJ on May 8, 2012 during a certain insight-oriented therapy. You remember that the main focus of Craviotto’s book was her suspicion about young Robson and Michael Jackson based solely on seeing them together (with Buz Kohan) during the reading session in 1990, which some twenty years later suddenly came extremely handy for Robson’s allegations.

And now that we see the nasty lie about Spielberg being spread by Wade Robson’s supporters, things have finally come full circle and now we have every reason to believe that Michael Jackson and Steven Spielberg are being dogged by one and same people, and that the smear campaign against both is coordinated from one source.

When Corey Feldman spoke about rampant pedophilia in Hollywood and people began to speculate about various personalities there, Feldman was infuriated by rumors about Spielberg and was adamant that IT WAS NOT HIM. In fact it was Spielberg who saved Corey from falling apart by introducing him to Michael Jackson with whom the boy managed to regain some of his innocence and lost childhood.

And if Spielberg was able to spot the right place for children it means that he definitely knows what is going on in Hollywood and who the real perpetrators are, and is keeping mum only not to create more trouble for himself than he already has.

Some will probably wonder how come Steven Spielberg may be a supporter of Michael Jackson if Michael reportedly placed him on his ‘enemy list’? Whether enemy or not, the rift was certainly there, but it happened due to Michael’s grave misinformation by his then business partners that it was Spielberg who ruined his dream of making a Peter Pan movie, while in reality it was done by them.

Others will wonder how Spielberg could be supportive of Michael if he is best friends with David Geffen who, by Michael’s own account sank his career?

Not so fast please as we still have the memoirs of Julia Phillips who revealed that Geffen never had any tender feelings towards Spielberg and all of it was business only. When their Dreamworks joint venture fell apart, it seems that very little was left of their former friendship.

‘YOU’LL NEVER EAT LUNCH IN THIS TOWN AGAIN’

Julia Phillips

Julia Phillips was a whistleblower who wrote in 1991 an autobiography portraying Hollywood’s underbelly in all its incredible ugliness and aptly called “You’ll Never Eat Lunch In This Town Again.”

Her name was mentioned in Adam Parfrey’s fabrication about Spielberg where he used it for a purely practical purpose – his intention was to show Spielberg as a drug-addict, so in addition to everything else he implied that the latter took part in Julia’s continual cocaine concatenations.

Julia Phillips was indeed a horrible cocaine addict. But she was also an extremely successful young Hollywood producer who at the age of 29 was the first woman to win Oscar for best picture (‘The Sting” starring Paul Newman and Robert Redford) and then produced major hits like Martin Scorsese’s ‘Taxi Driver’ and Steven Spielberg’s ‘Close Encounters of the Third Kind’.

Her autobiography is not available online, but judging by the comments the only bad thing she said about Spielberg was that he did try pot with her and it sent him coughing. In contrast to Adam Parfrey, her opinion about Spielberg’s E.T. couldn’t be more complimentary – she said that it was perfect.

Julia Phillips with Steven Spielberg

Her lab rats included even those she admired: In this interview she cited Steven Spielberg (”He’s become a business and an icon, but E.T. was as far as you could take a movie. Perfect”)

However she claimed that her cocaine habit exacerbated because of Spielberg’s perfectionism.

“Cocaine had never been a problem before,” she insists. “It was only after I started working with Steven [Spielberg]. He was such a perfectionist.”

Spielberg himself, Phillips concedes in ‘Lunch’, found her so wired he dubbed her the Madwoman of Beverly Hills.

The fun fact about Julia Phillips is that she was friends with both Spielberg and Geffen and had a grudge against both of them as she was fired by both at different moments in her life.

Spielberg fired her in 1977 at the post-production stage of ‘Close Encounters of the Third Kind’ movie because of her cocaine habit and as rumor had it, for giving Amy Irving coke in the ladies’ room.

And Geffen fired her from her own project ‘Interview With the Vampire’ (1989) which she brought to him after years of developing and nurturing it with Anne Rice, writer of the novel. In Geffen’s case the most probable reason for her dismissal was the fact that she waggled her tongue about his real attitude towards Spielberg.

And his real attitude towards Spielberg was seeing him as ‘selfish, self-centered, egomaniacal and greedy’:

She quotes the producer David Geffen as calling her former best friend Steven Spielberg “selfish, self-centered, egomaniacal, and worst of all — greedy,” and adds that she thinks it is “a pretty good description.”

Quoting Geffen in her book was Julia Phillips’s mistake, big mistake. It cost her the coveted producing job with Geffen which was her first after a long break. After being fired by Spielberg she apparently found Geffen to be a sympathetic listener to her complaints and he turned out to be equally derisive of the film-maker, but when she noted it in her book it sent Geffen into a fury – his views on Spielberg were obviously not meant for anyone else’s ears.

The thing is that in 1991 Geffen was officially on very good terms with Spielberg, and three years after the release of Julia Phillips’s book the two of them and Jeffrey Katzenberg even founded a new Dreamworks film studio together. In 2008 they went different ways again and it was then that Spielberg recalled the lesson taught to him by Steve Ross:

From Mr. Ross, said Mr. Spielberg, he and Mr. Geffen had learned now-fading rules that once governed Hollywood. The most basic, he said, was to “keep your friends close, and your enemies far away.”

Mr. Geffen, of course, is still a friend. But not quite so close, professionally speaking, as he was only a few weeks ago.

At this point it dawns on us that in 2011 when Darlene Craviotto was writing her book about ‘Project M’ Geffen and Spielberg saw each other only as former close friends who weren’t ‘quite so close’ any more.

However in 1991 their friendship was still blossoming, so no wonder that Geffen immediately disavowed anything said by Julia Phillips and fired her, having ‘plenty to say’ about her according to the LA Times:

Hollywood Chokes on ‘Lunch’: Producer Julia Phillips’ scathing account of her drug-filled years in the film industry of the ‘70s has a lot of insiders on edge

By NINA J. EASTON

MARCH 4, 1991

…Her one-time best buddy Spielberg is “selfish, self-centered, egomaniacal, and worst of all–greedy.” Actually, those are the words she claims came out of producer David Geffen’s mouth not too long ago. But then Phillips hastens to add in her book she agrees with this assessment. (Geffen insists her account of his discussions are dead wrong.) Spielberg comes off throughout as an ambitious backbiter.

Geffen has plenty to say about Phillips. “She has so many things wrong in that book, yet she talks about her photographic memory. She takes apart everyone in the community. People are aghast that she would write such an ugly, mean-spirited book.

“I don’t know who she imagines she is. She was one of a group of people who had three successful movies, all prior to 1976. But she imagines she is one of the most talented people in town, and the most beautiful.”

Geffen fired her from the “Vampire” project after reading the book, which, he said, completely misrepresented his meetings with her. Phillips, however, doesn’t plan to make it easy for Geffen to make the firing stick. Already, she has returned the $7,500 check Geffen sent to buy off her contract.

Geffen was still Julia Phillips’s boss at the moment of writing the book and this is probably why she was relatively gentle to him, by her standards of course. She just called him the ‘most money-obsessed person’ she knew and described him as being the ‘Donald Trump of Show Business’ adding a couple of personal shots at his looks.

Towards others in Hollywood she was much more relentless. Insiders called her description of Hollywood true but bitchy:

March 18, 1991

Liza Minnelli, at the 1976 Golden Globe Awards, is reported snorting coke behind the stall in the ladies’ room. During the filming of Close Encounters of the Third Kind, Richard Dreyfuss has a propensity for downing eight ounces of vodka in a few fast gulps and one day passes out on the set. Director Martin Scorsese cast Cybill Shepherd in Taxi Driver “for her big ass, a retro Italian gesture.”

Despite the anecdotes Martin Scorsese was Julia Phillips’s favorite film-director. She used to say about him, ‘Martin Scorsese hasn’t won the Oscar because the Academy doesn’t like geniuses’.

Julia Phlilips and Martin Scorsese

The Guardian, 3 Jan 2002:

In the course of the book, Phillips managed to insult a large portion of the industry’s elite, dismissing Newman as “seriously weird”, lambasting Goldie Hawn for her lack of personal hygiene, and claiming that fashion designer turned film-maker Joel Schumacher was “a better window dresser than film director.”

Most notoriously, the book claimed that Warren Beatty had once requested a threesome with Phillips and her 12-year-old daughter. [She replied, “We’re both too old for you”].

Inevitably its publication sounded the death knell for Phillips’s career as a producer. After reading that Phillips had likened him to “a middle-aged baby”, movie mogul David Geffen immediately fired her from the production of Interview With the Vampire. She never worked in films again.

Julia Phillips herself was disappointed that her critics didn’t see past the barbs. Of Warren Beatty she said:

”Why are people so crazed? Don’t they realize that’s how Warren says hello?” she asks.

Well, if this is the way people say hello in Hollywood, it shows that things have gone so far there that jokes about having sex with a child are perfectly acceptable and thought to be funny. Indeed, sometimes a joke can reveal more than a serious study.

However Julia Phillips was frustrated that everyone focused on her occasional barbs, while her main message was against the moguls who took over Hollywood in the ‘80s and turned it into a ‘mean, ruthless and nasty place’ it had not been before.

The New York Times, March 14, 1991:

“These are all people who wake up in the morning, look in the mirror and say, ‘Are they going to find out I’m a fraud today?‘ “Ms. Phillips said, as she nursed a vodka. “That’s about 90 percent of the town, which is why they’ve been so fearful and so nasty.”

Ms. Phillips, who will turn 47 next month, blames “the suits” for what she called Hollywood’s “meanness, ruthlessness and nastiness in the 80’s, which wasn’t there before.

“There were games before, there were a lot of players before, but there wasn’t this abrasiveness and lack of breeding, as my mother would say. When I started, there were people who wanted to do great things.”

April 4, 1991

Phillips maintains that she struck a nerve in the book others are afraid to acknowledge. The creative side of the business, she says, has been usurped by businessmen.

“After the book came out, I got all these calls from writers and directors thanking me because they feel so crushed by this new corporate fascist process,” Phillips said.

Some of her observations about women in Hollywood are very much to the point and relevant today:

The New York Times, August 17, 1995

 “You hear so much about the strides that women have made in the industry. But it seems to me that the ones who break through still do it playing whores or serial murderers.”

“I also think for the women out here, unless you become a plastic-surgery endorsement, it’s over, you know. You get past the age of 30, you’re over the hill.” She laughed. Women’s status is equally bleak in the movie business, she said. “It seems to me that the women being allowed to succeed try to strike this nonsexual persona that’s actually pretty unattractive,” she said. “It’s not just the clothes. A vibe can be armor, too. And I think most of them are scared. This is really a scared town, anyway. Except for 10 guys, who are scared only half the time, everyone else is scared, and women are more scared than any man.”

Julia Phillips was especially ridiculed for disliking Don Simpson, the creator of what she called ‘testosterone-driven movies that accelerated the stupidity of the American public and hardened male attitudes to women.’

The Telegraph 04 Jan 2002:

Don Simpson

Meanwhile, she did not hold back from expressing her views on the decline of the film industry during the 1980s.

Chief among the villains, in her estimation, was the late Don Simpson, inventor of “high concept” action movies, and the producer responsible for such films as Top Gun, Flashdance and Beverly Hills Cop.

These she dismissed as “terrible testosterone-driven movies that have accelerated the stupidity of the American public and have hardened male attitudes to women”.

Simpson himself was a “pig” with a “twinkly-simian lust for rough sex”.

Don Simpson was indeed a rare pig. The man who met him while he was in detox on a health farm called him the epitome of Hollywood, a male animal and ‘a kind of person who made your skin crawl.’

This animalistic character was sort of representing Hollywood in the 90s, but what’s noteworthy is that despite his life being ‘an unnatural act’ as some people call it, no one talked about it, preferring to go after the clean-living Michael Jackson instead.

Anyone who still has an ounce of common sense left should wonder why Don Simpson’s immorality was totally silenced by the press and why at the very same time the media trashed Michael Jackson on a daily basis and called him Wacko Jacko for innocent things like a pet chimp in his home or a photo in a hyperbaric chamber made in the burning center that treated him for a burn.

Just free your mind from the usual media stereotypes and look at Don Simpson through the eyes of a reader in the early ‘90s, and ask yourself a question – why was the media so vicious towards Jackson and so sweet to Don Simpson?

DON SIMPSON

If you compare the media turning a blind eye and deaf ear to Don Simpson indulgences with the constant mockery of Michael Jackson’s every single step, you will realize that the Hollywood brass used Michael as a means to divert attention from their own debauchery, drug-taking, sleazy sex, plastic surgery, you name it, and apparently had a good laugh at the gullibility of the public who fell for their trick.

If we are to believe the media, they discovered Don Simpson’s depravity only after his death, but even then they downplayed it, making reserved and respectable ‘scientific’ comment which is in no way comparable to their frantic screams about Michael Jackson (who by the way died totally clean of any narcotics).

Here are just a few snippets of what the media suddenly learned of Don Simpson after his death in 1996 at the age of 52.

The LA Times, August 18, 1996

It was no secret in Hollywood that producer Don Simpson had a drug problem. But the depth of his addiction was not revealed until the night he died.

The coroner’s toxicology report revealed that Simpson died from an overdose of 21 drugs, including cocaine and a broad spectrum of stimulants, antidepressants, sedatives and tranquilizers.

“This case is a classic example of why they call these things dangerous drugs,” said Steve Simmons, the California Medical Board senior investigator involved in the Simpson probe. “Everybody understands how lethal street drugs like heroin are, but it takes a prescription overdose by someone famous like Don Simpson to drive home the fact that pharmaceutical medications are just as deadly.”

‘Don Simpson Passes Away’, 02.02.1996:

Simpson’s personal troubles were mounting. “He’d been taking uppers and downers,” says Towne. “He took speed to work, and then he’d take downers to come down. Speed up, slow down, speed up, slow down. Sooner or later, the body rebels.” Says screenwriter James Toback,“I know that both David Geffen and Jeffrey Katzenberg had pressured him to go into a program.”

Of course they did. Don Simpson was part of their very close-knit circle called by Wiki “The Killer Dillers” – the aggressive team of producers mentored by Barry Diller who later turned into big-time media executives in their own right – Michael Eisner, Jeffrey Katzenberg, Dawn Steel, Garth Ancier and Don Simpson.

Don Simpson’s escapades were difficult not to notice as they were going on year after year, however the media did manage to overlook.

Wall Street Journal, January 1, 1996:

At night, he led a life that a number of people close to him thought was growing increasingly dangerous. He had always been known for his appetite for prostitutes; he was close friends with Hollywood madam Heidi Fleiss.

But Mr. Simpson was going beyond sex, sinking deeper into increasingly sadomasochistic and destructive behavior, say people who know him. His reputation was such that he is the subject of an entire chapter — titled “Don Simpson: An Education in Pain” — in a salacious new book penned by four Hollywood prostitutes. The book, “You’ll Never Make Love in This Town Again,” says his “serious bondage games were like something out of Marquis de Sade.”

The prostitutes actually called Don Simpson a vicious sadist who did things ‘the most men would go to jail for.’ As to other men in Hollywood they said they were incapable of ordinary humanity.

The Irish Times:

“The men featured in ‘You’ll Never Make Love’ are so accustomed to having their every whim answered immediately that, they no longer appear capable of ordinary humanity. Producer Don Simpson, for example, who died earlier this year, is depicted as a vicious sadist. Men such as Simpson, writes Tiffany “have the luxury of being able to do to young women things that most men would go to jail for“.

The world in which these call girls work is, they insist, very far involved from that of Pretty Woman. It’s not just that they are often physically assaulted and some of the sado masochism described in these pages is truly horrific but they also have to tolerate dishonesty and deception. “Hollywood is a boys’ club and the dreams that get fulfilled here are mostly male fantasies.” Even if not every tale included in You’ll Never Make Love is true, the book still stands as a devastating indictment of the world’s most important entertainment centre and its key players.

But when Don Simpson died in January 1996 the news reporting the sad event was for the most part solemn, dignified, so very appropriate for the death of a legendary producer and so very subdued. Even his drug consumption was ‘legendary’.

  • His legendary consumption knew no bounds. This unrestrained excess killed him and sent a warning cry throughout the industry.”

  • Nobody in Hollywood was shocked. When first told, a saddened Michael Eisner said he’d been expecting the bad news for the last 20 years.

  • “Don lived exactly the life he wanted to live,” director Joel Schumacher told Entertainment Weekly. “He had all the opportunities, all the intelligence, all the friends, all of the knowledge to have changed his life at any time. And he didn’t want to.”

After a long search for anything critical about Don Simpson and comparable to what they said about Michael Jackson, I found that only the Irish media used appropriate words for that character, but even they printed their verdict only after Charles Fleming wrote Simpson’s biography and revealed the depth of his depravity.

This piece from the Irish Times says that Hollywood lost connection to reality and created real-life monsters scarier than fictional Dracula.

A dive into decadence

Sat, Jun 13, 1998, 01:00

Over the past 75 years Hollywood has lost whatever fleeting connection to reality it may once have possessed, and become more outlandish than one of its own storylines. During the boom years of the 1980s, in particular the film industry hurtled to unprecedented heights, creating, along the way, a cast of real-life monsters far scarier than fictional fiends such as Godzilla or Dracula could ever hope to be.

One such was the producer Don Simpson, the man who is generally credited with inventing the kind of film now known as the high-concept blockbuster.

When he was making Top Gun, according to a former assistant, “He was split between the cocaine and the alcohol. At 4 p.m., he’d start on the 25-year-old Macallan. He’d be so loaded he could hardly walk. Then at five or so, he’d start on the cocaine. He’d spend the whole afternoon in and out of the bathroom.” That was in 1985.

A decade later Simpson decided to clean up his act. In the summer of 1995 he hired a doctor, Stephen Ammerman, to come to live with him in an attempt to beat his addiction to illegal drugs – but the detox plan went slightly awry when Ammerman was found dead in Simpson’s bathroom, having injected himself with four times the lethal amount of prescription-strength morphine.

The L.A.P.D. detective David Miller discovered that for the three-week period prior to Ammerman’s death, Simpson’s bill for prescription drugs at one pharmacy alone amounted to $12,902. That was at one pharmacy, using only his own name: when he added the multiple aliases, nine doctors and the eight or so pharmacies Simpson was known to use regularly, Miller came up with a total of $75,000 a month for painkillers, antidepressants, anxiety medications – and dozens of other drugs used to treat the side-effects caused by the mix-and-match cocktail.

A handsome man [ ] Simpson nevertheless spent a small fortune on plastic surgery. In one six-year period he had collagen implants in his cheeks and chin, a forehead lift and a restructuring of the eyebrows, liposuction to flatten his belly, a buttock lift, collagen injections in his lips and injections of fat into his penis.

There was a lot of swelling and fever. “In the end they had to take out whatever it was they put in there . . . ”

Hollywood wept and held memorial services; but reading this biography, it’s hard not to agree with the man who met him while he was in detox on a health farm. “He was,” he said, “the epitome – as a successful man, as a representative of Hollywood, as a male animal – of the kind of person who made your skin crawl.”

https://www.irishtimes.com/news/a-dive-into-decadence-1.162947

As a further note on Don Simpson’s work and professional style the following chapter from Charles Fleming’s book gives us a glimpse of how the ‘Days of Thunder’ movie starring Tom Cruise was produced by Don Simpson in 1990:

https://www.laweekly.com/days-of-plunder/

APRIL 22, 1998

Days of Thunder was meant to be Paramount Pictures’ biggest summer movie. Midway through production, though, bad news from the set was filtering back to Hollywood.

By now the budget had ballooned to $70 million. But Simpson, who had turned Cruise into a bona fide movie star with Top Gun seemed unperturbed. The Thunder location was a permanent party. By day, from his suites at the Daytona Beach Marriott, Simpson would dispatch two assistants to area beaches, to ask attractive young women if they wanted to attend a party for Tom Cruise. By night, the women would join Simpson, Bruckheimer, Cruise, screenwriter Robert Towne and Scott for dinner and after-hours discotheque dancing. The booze and the cocaine — kept in steady supply — were plentiful. “One morning I found three bags of cocaine stuck behind a cushion on the sofa,” one assistant remembers. “Simpson had been pounding on my door at 4 a.m., yelling at me to come and party.”

After rising late — “basically, he would sleep all day,” a source on the set remembers — while Bruckheimer oversaw the actual production of the movie, Simpson would work out every day on equipment specially ordered from a list supplied by muscular movie star Arnold Schwarzenegger.

And then there was the script, by all accounts incomplete when shooting started. When production and editing ended, the script was still painfully pedestrian and full of howlingly unlikely moments.

Privately, midway through production, Simpson’s enthusiasm was waning. Thunder was a mess. Having begun production without a fully completed script, Cruise and the others were being fed new pages every morning and new lines even as they worked. For a while, Cruise read new lines off the dashboard of his speeding stock car, until keeping his eyes off the road caused him to crash.

“The movie was a disaster while we were shooting,” says a source from the set. “It was taking so long, and we weren’t getting it.” We didn’t finish shooting principal photography until May, and we were supposed to release the movie in May, and we still weren’t finished.”

Simpson was demoralized. One afternoon, Weber found him sitting with his head in his hands. “We’re fucked,” he moaned. “We’re fucked. There’s no story here. We barely have a first act, and then we don’t have anything after that.”

Warren Beatty as Dick Tracy, 1990

Memorial Day marked Thunder’s release date. It would open against Disney’s big-budget Dick Tracy, a vanity project directed by and starring Warren Beatty. Beatty was a friend, and a nearby Bel Air neighbor, and Disney’s film division was run by Jeffrey Katzenberg, formerly Simpson’s assistant at Paramount. Taunting Katzenberg, Simpson sent a fax: “You can’t escape the thunder!” Katzenberg faxed back: “You won’t believe how big my Dick is!”

Lacing through the thundering racing action was music from Jeff Beck, Joan Jett and the team of Elton John and Bernie Taupin.”

The mess with ‘Days of Thunder explains why David Geffen was so desperate to get a Michael Jackson’s cover version of ‘Come Together’ for the movie for which his record company was putting out the soundtrack album.

The situation was a disaster and MJ’s thundering beat was apparently the last straw Geffen was grasping at. $70 million had already been spent but they were still ‘fucked up’ – however the awful news was that Walter Yetnikoff refused to allow the song.

Geffen was enraged and went on a crusade to wreak havoc for Walter.

Now that I’ve listened to MJ again (here) it is clear that if Geffen had got this yet unreleased song, people would have flocked to see the movie for the soundtrack alone.

When the media printed the sanitized version of the story they claimed that it was Michael Jackson who asked Geffen to include the song into the movie, though in reality it was the opposite of course, and presented it as a small matter though it was actually a huge quarrel between Geffen and MJ’s associates.

The NY Magazine described the fight over ‘Come Together’ as taking place in spring 1990 which was exactly the time when the whole future of the Days of Thunder movie was at stake.

New York Magazine

November 5, 1990 

Last spring, Geffen says, Michael Jackson asked him to include an unreleased Jackson song – a cover version of John Lennon’s “Come Together” – on Geffen’s Records’ soundtrack for the Tom Cruise race-car movie, Days of Thunder. Yetnikoff refused to allow it… “I didn’t want him to have the thing,” says Yetnikoff.

It was a small matter, but Geffen’s friends say it enraged him all the same. If Geffen couldn’t get Jackson’s song, maybe he could get Jackson himself – lure him from CBS to Geffen Records. Or, at the very least, make a move to do so and wreak some havoc for Walter.

You will remember that the background for all those events was the fake Project M, that lasted at least four months (February-May 1990) during which Jeffrey Katzenberg and his camp were keeping Michael Jackson ‘happy’ and on a quick start in case a return favor was required of him.

When the quarrel over ‘Come Together’ took place in May and Project M went bust in early June, Michael Jackson was so shattered that on June 4th he was taken to hospital with chest pains that turned to be a heavy case of cartilage inflammation thought to be caused by over-exertion or stress.

After four days in hospital and weeks of recovering at home Geffen sent him flowers and on June 21st Michael thanked him by a letter saying that with Geffen’s ‘prayers and blessings as a shield’ he was quickly advancing towards recovery and promised to continue sharing the fruits of his labor ‘with loyal friends’ such as Geffen (more about it here).

“Dear David: The flowers you sent during my illness were so beautiful and greatly appreciated. With your prayers and blessings as my shield, I am quickly advancing towards complete recovery. I fully expect to resume work in the near future and continue sharing the fruits of my labor with loyal friends such as you. Thank you for standing by me. You’re wonderful! Love always, Michael Jackson” June 21, 1990

‘Loyal friends such as you’, ‘your prayers and blessing are my shield’, ‘thank you for standing by me’ – and after that our Producer thinks that Michael Jackson wasn’t trusting and naïve?

Though I am not sure you can really call it naivety – Michael simply believed in the good of all human beings and this is where his mistake was.

In any case the outline of the events described by these documents is much more realistic than the picture painted by the Producer. Let me remind you of what he said:

  • TriStar wanted Robin Williams and Spielberg’s approach, Michael had tentative not-very-strong interest from Disney in his. And it was the only reason they were humoring him. Film financing is hard even when you’re a heavyweight”

Film financing is indeed hard, especially when you humor someone for several months, but still can’t get from him his great music to save the film.

A NOTE FOR THE HOLLYWOOD PRODUCER

The people who read Julia Phillips’s book in 1991 and compare it with what we now know of Hollywood are really impressed – she was indeed a whistleblower turned into an outcast for describing Hollywood the way it really was.

April 21, 1991

In the 1970s Phillips ran with a fast, talented crowd; Martin ScorseseSteven SpielbergPaul Schrader are among “the guys at the beach” who hung out with her and dreamed of making the great American movie.

[Now] it is a lacerating indictment of Hollywood’s culture of status and greed. As she talks about the deals, remembers the meetings, describes the productions and quotes her friends, it is impossible to say if every fact or quotation is accurate, but the overall thrust is true. Hollywood is like this. People do say these stupid things, and have these worthless values, and lie like this, and double-cross one another, and keep exquisitely detailed psychic records of snubs and status.

She does not exaggerate. For every good guy she praises, every hero like Alan Ladd Jr. or David Brown, Schrader or Scorsese, there are a hundred creeps. This is not to say that Phillips was not often a creep herself, grabbing credit for other people’s genius just like the people she ridicules.  It is simply to say that it takes one to know one.

02 SEP 2018

The book is a rambling monster holding nothing back, with a neat turn in bitchiness. She goes after actors, directors, writers but particularly the moguls, whom she blames for the decline in the quality of Hollywood films during the 1980s.  The strength of the book is not her self-indulgence or what she thought of individuals, but burrowing under the studio politics and decision-making processes, such as Geffen patently refusing to hire a director who is smarter than he is; sorry, Neil Jordan.

It’s difficult to gauge how reliable she is because of the relentless score-settling, but it all sounds horribly plausible and it is difficult to work out the more unpleasant of the two, Julia or the town which nurtured her and she turned on: so much for the dream factory.

If it seemed hyperbolic when it was first published, we now know Hollywood is just as dysfunctional as Phillips claimed.  We are aware that a lot of those attracted to the world of movie-making are just as ghastly as she said they were, though given the history of Hollywood and earlier exposés, it should not have come as a surprise to find it full of selfish, venal, greedy sociopaths often possessing poor judgment.  

After this little overview of Hollywood portrayed by its insiders I hope you will agree that it is simply monstrous on the part of these people to present themselves as judges of human character and pass their moral verdict on those they hardly know.

Their judgment is poor, their opinion worthless, their views are shallow and twisted as they were formed in the atmosphere of lies, hypocrisy and misconceptions, amid back-slapping camaraderie over their joint indulgences, overwhelming fear and silence.

In comparison with this crowd Michael Jackson looks like an E.T. from a different planet. And same as with everyone who is not of this world, these creeps are unable to attribute to Michael Jackson anything else but their own cynical way of thinking, their vile habits and monstrous interpretations of another person’s deeds – and all of it simply because they don’t know anything else.

How dare these people climb on their high horses if half of them are deadbeat junkies and alcoholics and the other half are mean cynics, not to mention weirdoes like Don Simpson or Warren Betty who says hello by suggesting a threesome with a woman and her teenage daughter?

And why did the media keep a daily vigil on Michael Jackson instead of reporting the incessant vile practices of Hollywood personalities? Those who will say that the media merely overlooked it will be requested to take the wool off their eyes and face the reality – all of it was the deliberate window dressing which was especially mean as they chose a man whose little finger they were not worthy of.

And the very fact that they chose Michael Jackson for the role of a fall guy is the best proof that he was not one of them.  

The argument that Michael Jackson couldn’t be different ‘because it’s not possible to be so cheery and naive and survive, especially if he truly was as innocent and helpless as his fans claim’ does not hold water because firstly, Michael Jackson did not survive, while our Hollywood Producer did, and following his logic we are supposed to think that he is no better than the Hollywood crowd because it is impossible to be good and still survive in that environment.

It has always been my impression that those who are playing this nasty game against Michael Jackson attributed to him what they themselves are guilty of. And even take some kind of perverse pleasure in doing it so openly.

The powerful have their own jokes and play them big time.

But what previously was only an impression has now turned into a firm conviction that the things they themselves indulged in – drugs, plastic surgery, sexual abuse, voodoo curses, whatnot – were deliberately alleged about Michael Jackson to distract attention from the real perpetrators who were never touched.

And since I mentioned the voodoo curses – another of those mad rumors about MJ – here is the final piece from Julia Phillips who tells us the unsurprising news that ‘there is plenty of black magic in Hollywood’ and seems even surprised that her interviewer didn’t know about it.

She also adds, “I’m beginning to think it works, given who I know are the practitioners.”

Here is her 1992 interview where she talks about it at about 1:10 min, looking visibly shaken and nervous throughout the conversation.

Julia Phillips died in 2002 of breast cancer aged 57.

Made In The USA report: Julia Phillips (1992)

What Michael Jackson, Laura Nyro & Donna Summer had in common: DAVID GEFFEN

March 2, 2020

Reader luv4hutch has sent us the summary of his debate with a friend about Michael Jackson and asked for a comment or post about it. And though our waiting list is already long, let it be another unexpected post that precedes everything else.

The person who goes as a “Producer” in the debate is a producer working in the entertainment industry. His views about Jackson are standard for the people of his trade – they were formed by very many years of listening to rumor and innuendo from the so-called reliable people in Hollywood, generating inflated stories and feeding on them too, and also some scraps of insider’s information which may be occasionally true. All of it has long cemented into their rock solid confidence that no one can possibly know more about Jackson and that everything to know about him is already there.And since these people see no need in learning anything new or fact-checking the earlier stories we can safely say that they got stuck in the past, in a sort of Stone Age with regard to Michael Jackson.

“Reader” is the initiator of the debate who is apparently sitting on the fence and is torn between his friend who seems to be so knowledgeable about Jackson and his own doubts in the veracity of claims about him.  His views are more or less typical of the present of Michael Jackson – which is still controversial and unclear for the majority of people.

And we here represent Michael Jackson’s future. After more than 10 years of research of every pro and con argument we are one hundred per cent certain that Michael Jackson was innocent and consider it only a matter of time when it becomes obvious to everyone else. This confidence arose from examining every story about Jackson and after finding nothing incriminating there we have moved on to explore the unchartered waters and the subjects of our interest now are somewhat bewildering to the uninitiated – like the role of a certain Victor Gutierrez or David Geffen in Michael Jackson’s fate, for example.

So the main difference between us is that we know everything they know, while they don’t have even a fraction of our knowledge. They think they possess some precious insiders’ information and do not understand that we have already dissected their knowledge into a million pieces and have discarded it all after examining it several times over, and are far ahead of these people now. So far ahead that it is actually a bore to go over it again and again.

However I will still make a comment on an issue that needs clarification and further research and is actually what our Friend started with.

Producer: Geffen came on to Michael and got turned down? Well, that’s funny, considering before Michael had a taste for more dubious activities, he had a taste for men. I know of several men who can be reliably stated to have dated Michael, Jehovah Witness-ism to the contrary.

VMJ: Several men reliably stated it? If Scott Thorson is one of those highly reliable people here is a post about this character. As regards the opinion of Hollywood at large, our Friend should know better than others that there are no reliable sources in Hollywood – everyone lies there and everyone repeats someone else’s false story.

And this isn’t just my opinion – it is a statement of the Los Angeles Magazine that presented it as an indisputable fact in its March 2004 issue: Read more…

Blanca Francia’s Testimony Revisited: STRANGE CONNECTIONS

January 30, 2020

The previous post about Blanca Francia introduced you to the psychologist Mike Craft, who worked with Blanca and her son Jason within a state-run ‘program for molested children’, and Attorney Terry Cannon, who reached a settlement with Michael Jackson’s lawyers on behalf of the Francia family.

Both Mike Craft and Terry Cannon surprised me by the time they appeared in Blanca Francia’s orbit.

Diane Dimond writes that the state-run therapy and counseling program was arranged for Jason after his mother’s interview with the police (Sept-Oct.1993) and this means that the program began even before Jason complained about anything at all (March ’94) or even before he first met with the police (Nov. 3, ’93).

Mike Craft is a marriage and family counselor. He set up his office in 1992. The number of staff is 1 (one).

If Jason Francia’s therapy indeed started before he ever recalled any tickling by MJ, it will change our perception of the situation around Michael Jackson so much that before any conclusions are made this stunning point should be double checked by all means.

As to attorney Terry Cannon he surprised me by entering the picture already at Jason Francia’s second police interview on March 24, 1994. This date didn’t jibe with the official version either as we were told that the negotiations over a settlement began only in late ’94/early ’95 after all dust in the Chandler case had settled.

These inexplicable shifts in the timeline were a curious twist to the story and demanded attention. What I found was lying almost on the surface. Read more…

Blanca Francia’s Testimony Revisited: THE TIMELINE

January 25, 2020

The promise to cover the remaining parts of ‘Leaving Neverland’ horror movie will be certainly kept, but before that we need to finish with the Blanca and Jason Francia’s story which is also a very big subject that has secrets of its own.

And I am not only talking about Blanca’s so-called evidence regarding Wade Robson that was handled in one of the previous posts – there are a lot of other interesting details that will open up to you if you really look.

Blanca Francia

This post will be about some of those secrets, but first here is a short reminder of what we found earlier about Blanca’s tale regarding Wade Robson.

Some excerpts from her 1993/94 deposition, posted on the internet only recently, made it clear that the story of ‘the former maid seeing Michael in a shower with little Wade Robson’ is a myth dispelled by her own depositions which took place just three years after the alleged event.

It turned out that she had seen only one figure in Michael Jackson’s shower – that of Michael himself. She only assumed that someone else could be there because his figure was blurred and half seen through the fogged glass, and she heard him give a little he-he-he giggle which made her think that he was talking to someone, though there were no other voices heard.

She also assumed that Wade Robson was in the shower as the boy was not in MJ’s room and she saw him and Michael Jackson together later in the day. But nothing was seen or heard in that bathroom – all of it was just a play of her vivid imagination.

Great as this discovery was, more awaited us when we learned that the alleged event  took place in December 1989 which dotted the i’s and crossed the t’s – by that time the Robsons had not even arrived in the US yet as their first visit to Neverland was only in February 1990.

So regardless of Robson’s claims, the described scene has nothing to do with him and we can forget about Robson for now.

A little more research brought us the name of the boy who really stayed at Neverland at the time specified by Blanca Francia – that of Ryan White, an AIDS victim whose condition was already so bad that he died just four months later, in April 1990.

Ryan White, aged 18 meets Ronald and Nancy Reagan. This is his last public appearance [March 1990]

Though being already 18 years old Ryan White looked very young, small and no older than 12, and could be easily taken by Blanca Francia for a ‘little’ friend of Michael Jackson.

And if she made her assumptions about that boy, any ideas about a joint shower with him will be completely crazy considering his disease, because at that time people were afraid of even sitting beside an AIDS victim, not to mention going to a shower or a bathtub with an infected person.

However another astonishing fact we know about Michael Jackson is that he wanted to go to a Jacuzzi with Ryan White.

When speaking to Larry King, Michael’s dermatologist Arnold Klein said that Michael asked him if going in a Jacuzzi with Ryan would be safe and didn’t pose a threat to him. He asked Dr. Hoefflin too, and Hoefflin strongly advised him against it, while Klein said it was okay.

Why did Michael want to do it for Ryan White?

He wanted to show the boy that he wasn’t a pariah and that at least Michael wasn’t afraid of him. Michael’s heart always went out to the weak and he wanted Ryan to feel normal and no different from others. He wanted to set him at his ease and acted like there was nothing extraordinary in taking a Jacuzzi with an infected person though everyone around shunned him like the plague.

In case Michael Jackson managed to realize his big plan and did take Ryan to a Jacuzzi during that visit, Blanca Francia could indeed see their wet swimming trunks on the floor (as she said she did) and Michael could indeed take a shower after that, right in the middle of the day.

As to Ryan White, after the Jacuzzi he would certainly go back to his guest unit to have a nap there – he was so frail that he regularly took a nap in the daytime to regain his strength.

For details of what Blanca Francia said during those 1993/94 depositions please go to this post. And if you want to learn more about Ryan White’s five-day stay at Neverland (in a guest unit by the way) in December ‘89 and see how he got acquainted with MJ at all, you can go to a separate page of this blog that will tell you about the two visits to Neverland described by Ryan White himself. He doesn’t mention the Jacuzzi, but if it did happen it could be only during his second visit to Neverland at Christmas 1989.

And we proceed to Blanca Francia’s numerous depositions that span the incredible period of nearly 25 years – this is how long every speck of dust around Michael was dissected by law enforcement, the media and his detractors.

Our goal is to see 1) what Blanca and Jason Francia testified to and what is true and false in their story 2) how their narrative progressed as time went by and 3) why and how Blanca reached a $2 mln. settlement agreement with MJ in connection with her son’s claims that he was tickled on three occasions within the five years they knew him. Read more…

A See-Through-Lies Manual on Orietta Murdock, Victor Gutierrez and Joy Robson

December 22, 2019

UPDATED

In the comments for one of this blog posts there are two short texts about little Wade Robson in Michael Jackson’s recording studio – one is Orietta Murdock’s statement from the Prosecution ‘Prior Bad Acts’ Motion for the 2005 trial and the other comes from Victor Gutierrez’s literary opus about Michael published in 1996.

For those who don’t know the above characters here is a reminder:  Orietta Murdock was Michael Jackson’s administrative assistant in September 1989–January 1991 and Victor Gutierrez is a pedophilia advocate who dogged Jackson since the late 80s, spread innumerable lies about him and who by Diane Dimond’s own admission, was the latter’s best source.

The stories by Murdock and Gutierrez are the usual kind – they are blatant lies about Michael Jackson and the only peculiar thing about them is that they are identical, though told by different people and at different times. My conclusion was that in the job of smearing Michael Jackson these two personas worked in close cooperation with each other, and Gutierrez was most probably the one with whom the false text originated.

The story proper was not analyzed as I thought that the proof of Murdock’s cooperation with a scumbag like Gutierrez was reason enough to immediately flash it down the toilet, but a reader left a comment to the effect that who told whom is a secondary matter as the basis of the story is true.

Indeed, who told whom doesn’t matter that much, but I am highly resentful of the idea that the basis of the story is true.  It is absolutely not true, though I understand why people fall into the fallacy of thinking that it is – if some elements sound familiar people get the impression that they know the general idea, and if a couple of details are real, they imagine that the whole of it is basically correct.

But clean and dirty waters are also basically the same as they share the same molecular structure, only one is safe to drink while the other will cause you sickness and even death. And the same goes for stories and information at large – though looking similar some of it is downright poisonous.

So it’s high time we realized that it is absolutely not enough to know the story ‘in general’ – this is only the illusion of knowledge and if you don’t know the story in full you may as well consider yourself ignorant of the matter.

HARD FACTS

Before we deal with the Gutierrez and Murdock lies the first thing to start with is establishing the hard facts of the story. And there can’t be a better source for the episodes described than Joy Robson, mother of Wade Robson. She testified to all that at the 2005 trial and her account can be trusted as even after her son’s U-turn against Jackson she hasn’t changed it and it is only her perception of some details that may be different now. Read more…

Blanca Francia’s Deposition BLASTS the Wade Robson Story

December 4, 2019

The name of Blanca Francia is now firmly associated with Wade Robson. She used to be a personal maid to Michael Jackson, who later made controversial statements about him, and Robson insisted on Michael’s innocence for the first 30 years of his life, but since making his U-turn in 2013 has told most horrible things about his former friend.

So previously Francia and Robson were on the opposite sides of the barrier, and now they are allies whose case against Jackson is based on each other stories – Blanca Francia thinks she saw the shadow of Robson in Michael Jackson’s shower at Neverland, and Robson, though recalling none of it himself, goes much further and claims she saw Michael Jackson “rubbing the Plaintiff” and “the Plaintiff’s head was pressed against Michael Jackson’s stomach area.”

The above Robson’s statements come from his Motion to amend his third amended complaint filed on September 9, 2016 (for its screenshot see the collage below).

The collage, combining an excerpt from the 2016 Motion and Robson’s milder version of the same from an earlier court document, was made by Hammer whose Twitter account also introduced me to the recent 2016 deposition of Blanca Francia.

Why is the description of the shower episode different in Robson’s two court documents and why is the amended 2016 version so gross in its content?

Whenever Robson’s story is found inconsistent his standard reply is that his memory “evolved”. But given that the new amendment was made three days after Blanca Francia’s deposition on September 6, 2016, it would be logical to assume that Robson took all those salacious details from her new testimony – however the problem here is that Blanca Francia said nothing of the kind there, so Robson must have drawn inspiration from another source.

Of course Blanca Francia’s deposition is available to us only in the bits and pieces put online by the one who bought those pages from the court reporter, but when you start reading the little we have, you will realize that even the above graphic content is not that important as it fades in comparison with the discovery we make there. Read more…

10 years of vindicating Michael Jackson

November 21, 2019

Sometimes there are dates or anniversaries of which you don’t know whether to celebrate them or to mourn them. After Michael Jackson’s 10th death anniversary this year, we now have the 10th anniversary of the foundation of our Vindicate MJ blog. Exactly today 10 years ago, on November 21 in 2009, Helena sent this blog online into the world with these first words:

“Father, Forgive Them; They Don’t Know What They Are Doing…”, with Johann Sebastian Bach’s famous Orchestral Suite No. 3 in D Major called “Air” and with her explanation why she started this work.

Well, in view of the fact that nothing has changed since November 2009 and that we still have to fight for the truth, it’s hard to celebrate this 10 year anniversary. And meanwhile I believe it is fair to say that some things cannot be forgiven anymore – at least it is up to God to forgive the liars, our human souls are not able to do this.10 years

When faced with the “Leaving Neverland” spectacle this year, it felt like we were thrown back to the beginning of our journey and have to start with educating people all over again.

However, what happened within these 10 years made us stronger and helped us to counter these new allegations with much more knowledge. There was so much research done by Jackson’s fans and supporters in this decade that we now can reply to every new claim and allegation with an enormous amount of facts like nobody else. This was harder in the beginning after Michael’s death than it is now.

Of course, the media didn’t learn much during this time, they ignore most of the facts now as they did it in earlier years. This is a systematic approach! We cannot rely on their objective treatment of Michael Jackson and all the stories spread about him. When it comes to MJ, they are still not interested in doing the task assigned to them: detailed fact-checking and objective assessment and reporting of stories and allegations.

But with all the research that was done by Michael Jackson “truthers” in an almost scientific manner since Michael’s death, we today can be very sure and convinced that we are right! That we are not mistaken! Because with every new fact we found out, our convictions were corroborated. And this is the joint work of international groups of bloggers, advocates and researchers, of which Helena is one of the most important.

On this day I want to highlight particularly the work done by Helena in the course of these 10 years, with so much passion that sometimes her health suffered severely from it. I remember the several public trials she covered arduously, writing posts every day and night, hardly sleeping during these weeks. I remember the attacks from MJ haters by impersonating the blog with lies and fake news. I remember her falling in a hurry and breaking her wrists which required her to stay in hospital for a while and leaving the blog to others, when she couldn’t write herself. The several times of absence from the blog always made the readers miss her very much – because she could not and never can be replaced. Her quick perception and excellent judgment and assessment of things are unparalleled and so much needed in difficult situations when false stories on Michael become overwhelming and people don’t know what to believe. In these times we need somebody with a clear view, with a wealth of knowledge and a good memory, leading us through the waves of rumors, untruths and biased reporting.

Certainly, nobody can do this amount of work on a daily basis for years. We need to stay healthy, we have families and have to care for other things and family members. So the temporal intervals between writing posts became longer over time, and it also didn’t seem necessary to repeat all facts any time new claims and lies on Michael came up. Principally, all was said on the allegations, and the facts speak for themselves.

But this year was different. Leaving Neverland and the two liars and their director made us nearly vomit considering the filthiness and the impertinence of their lies. And also nauseating was the fact that the media and the entertainment industry embraced the film despite the transparency of the lies, as well as the fact that pedophilia doesn’t seem any longer a subject of disgust, but of entertainment and a new ideology (“children can enjoy sex with adults”). Moreover, the agenda to bring down Jackson’s legacy became so obvious.

Seeing Robson and Safechuck going so far as to present themselves with their lies as movie stars (with even photo sessions showing them as the popstars they always wanted to be) was a shock – not a shock about the lies they told, because we already knew them – but a shock about how low some people can sink to make headlines and to take revenge.

The good thing that happened after the initial shock was the unity and the collective reaction of the fanbase and MJ advocates. And especially that many younger “MJ truthers” took over and stroke back on Twitter, YouTube and other social media, even in form of a great documentary, with joint forces and vast knowledge. This gives us a lot of hope. Helena and I are over 60 now, and we need the younger ones to take over and continue the work. It is necessary that younger fans carry forward the vindication work with the same passion and with new instruments and skills, and we are glad that we can rely on them.

Now I would particularly like to say a big Thank you to Helena for her tireless work and commitment. She is one of the pioneers in the MJ blogger community that emerged after Michael’s death, and did a lot of the essential research we needed for today. And we hope that she will be here as long as possible and give us the light we need.

I think we can be thankful that we could keep the blog alive for 10 years now and that nobody could break us. Considering the new law controlling the internet in Helena’s home country, this cannot be taken for granted for the future. And now that a new Californian legislation enables Robson and Safechuck to return their cases to the trial court, there is possibly a lot more work to do and we are far from reaching our goal. But we hope for the best that we will be able to go on TOGETHER!

The VMJ blog is an academic Chair for studying Michael Jackson, and it hopefully will exist another 10 years and longer, beyond our own lives, to educate next generations. This is our wish and we will take care that it remains safe. Thanks to all our readers who keep us going!

May God bless you, Helena!

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