Janet Jackson demands retraction from "Vanity Fair"
A lawyer for pop star Janet Jackson has demanded that the magazine Vanity Fair run a retraction over a published claim that she held up her late brother Michael Jackson's funeral until her US $40,000 deposit to secure his burial plot was repaid.
The allegation appeared in the November issue of the magazine in an excerpt from Randall Sullivan's forthcoming book Untouchable: The Strange Life and Tragic Death of Michael Jackson.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Jackson's attorney Blair G. Brown has written a letter to the magazine's editor Graydon Carter calling the assertion "false and defamatory." The letter is dated October 5 and published in full on the star's website.In it, Brown writes Jackson "never delayed the funeral in any way," that she "paid for the funeral in full and was reimbursed for some of those expenses by Michael Jackson's estate in th year after the services took place," and that she never sought reimbursement for other private costs she incurred as a result of Jackson's death in 2009.
"I demand that Vanity Fair retract its statement," Brown writes. "I also demand that Vanity Fair contact all other media and websites that have re-published Vanity Fair's false statement and inform them of its retraction and its corrective statement."
In a statement to the Reporter, Vanity Fair stood by Sullivan's claims.
"Vanity Fair stands by Randall Sullivan's assertion that Janet
Jackson's demand to be reimbursed for her deposit on her brother’s
burial plot was one of the reasons Michael Jackson’s funeral was
delayed," the the statement reads. "Sullivan's sources told him that the amount of the deposit was
$40,000, but records released last week indicate that the amount of the
deposit was $49,000. Vanity Fair will make that correction on VF.com."
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