“You can make jokes about so many things, why not do something brave?”
Last night, Leaving Neverland director, Dan Reed, accepted the award for “Outstanding Documentary or Nonfiction Special” at the 2019 Creative Arts Emmys on behalf of the controversial two-part film and its crew.
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While backstage at the ceremony, Reed addressed some of the film’s responses, namely those of Dave Chappelle’s, who, in his latest Netflix stand-up special, asked a crowd not to watch the film, claiming “I don’t believe those motherfuckers.” According to The Hollywood Reporter, Reed described Chappelle’s jabs at the special as “revolting” and “a calculated attack” on alleged victims, Wade Robson and James Safechuck. Reed adds, “I think that mocking the victims of child sexual assault isn’t a particularly clever thing to do,” before acknowledging “It got some laughs because it was part of his bit about cancel culture …. I never said to cancel Michael. There’s nothing in the documentary that says people need to stop listening to his music.”
Reed’s condemnation of the comedian’s remarks follows that of Robson, who expressed his own discontent with Chappelle’s Sticks & Stones special. Within days of its premiere, Robson told TMZ Sticks & Stones was “disgusting, irresponsible and inexcusable.”