Biographer Ian Halperin, who tried many times to get close to the King of Pop and finally succeeded by posing as a hairdresser has finally completed his biography on Michael Jackson, “Unmasked: The Final Years of Michael Jackson.”
Halperin who said he set out to nail Michael Jackson because he was disgusted when Michael was acquitted by the jury in 2005 of child molestation charges says that the King of Pop was gay and he can unequivocally prove it and he has pictures of Michael in women’s clothes.
Halperin goes on to try and redeem himself during the interview by saying in the process of writing the book, he found that MJ was quite a great person and all of those ideas went out the window. He mentions that he predicted, in December 2008, that Michael would die within six months and Michael did die six months and a day after his prediction.
Here are some excerpts from the book:
Have you slept in the last two weeks?
Not much. I’ve been keeping close track on the developments following Michael’s death. I’m one of the only people in the world that have sources in his camp, inside the Jackson family and in the house in Encino. So the information I’m accumulating is crucial.
The timing of the book is crazy. On the other hand, you probably wish you had more time to include some of the things you’re learning.
Yeah, definitely. I met Michael, and I liked him a lot, and it’s extremely tragic the way that he died. Especially considering how great a father he was and how amazing an entertainer and person Michael Jackson was. So it’s extremely sad. Yeah, the timing’s good. I can’t deny that. But on the other hand, there’s three kids without a dad.
When you set out on the project, obviously you didn’t hold the same opinion of him. As the book unfolds, your ideas about him clearly boomeranged.
Exactly. I set out to nail him. I was disgusted when he was acquitted by the jury in 2005. I thought the L.A. judicial system had goofed again, that we had another O.J. Simpson case on our hands — another criminal walking free. I was determined to nail him, and I have a history of doing that, a history of investigative journalism. My mission was to dig up the facts and prove to the world he was a child molester. Thousands of interviews and years of research later, today I conclude unwaveringly that he was not a child molester.
Why you? Why did you feel it was your personal duty to prove he was guilty?
I was extremely disappointed in the outcome of the case. I felt the media had not properly presented the case. The LAPD and the L.A. court system have continually made errors of judgment when it comes to high-profile Hollywood cases. And being a father myself, I just felt it was almost a duty to prove to the world that he was a child molester. To me, you can’t get any worse.
One thing you feel you proved without a doubt is that he was gay. Has anyone else besides your two sources stepped forward to say, “I had a relationship with this man?”
Well, a lot of people have stepped forward. I had about eight serious cases of people, including one notorious gay porn actor in L.A., but they were not able to provide corroboration, so I couldn’t include them in the book. You have to understand, anyone that Michael came into contact with, he forced them to sign confidentiality agreements. I do believe strongly that one of the [alleged lovers] will eventually come forward. I say in the book that one of the ways he was able to meet his lovers was by dressing up as a woman. Some of the media have been skeptical about that, but I can prove it without a shadow of a doubt. I have photos of him dressing up as a woman, and I’ll include them in my film when it comes out next year.
You must be working frantically to finish the film.
I have over 300 hours of footage. I’m determined to make it the most definitive, most credible Michael Jackson film, so I don’t want to rush it. I won’t release the film until it’s properly produced and leaves no questions unanswered. Most likely it will come out in June 2010, to coincide with the one-year anniversary of his death. The reason I did the book first was I just felt I wanted to get the message out to the world that he wasn’t a child molester. And it was supposed to coincide with the upcoming tour. I’ve always gone on record to say the tour would never happen. Either way, I knew there would be a huge buzz.
What can you tell readers about your sources?
Well, I once dated a close staff member of Michael’s. When his management found out about the connection, they fired her. It’s important to point out that I’ve worked in Hollywood for years and years. I’ve known a lot of these people, these aides to A-list celebrities, for years. In Hollywood, people know me more as a filmmaker than an author. Some of them don’t even know I write books. They always see me filming out there.
Any sense what kinds of revelations might come out about Michael?
About the trail of money. I heard a ton of allegations: for instance, how Michael was sleeping on people’s floors in New Jersey a couple of years ago, totally broke. How when he moved to Ireland in 2006, he was pretty much penniless. People don’t really know how desperate he was, or how despondent he became. He had to knock on friends’ doors and sleep in their basements to protect the kids, to have a roof over their heads.
Take a look inside Michael Jackson’s Las Vegas home:
You write about your own personal encounters with him. How hard is it to continue trying to “nail” him once you’ve met him? Before you met him, he was an abstract target.
Absolutely. I’d just about given up on meeting him. I’m usually pretty good if I need to meet celebs. With him, every time I got within five feet and thought my chance had arrived, some burly bodyguard would stand in the way and intimidate me. I thought I’d go ahead with the project without meeting him, but then I got a tip from one of his aides about where he’d be.
Can you explain how you posed as a hairdresser to get inside?
That was the only way. Originally, I tried to meet him as a regular person, but I could’ve gotten my head kicked in. Then I decided to resort to my old undercover persona, and I took a hairdressing course for a couple of months. One of his aides told him about me, and I got tipped off about where he’d be. He showed up, and he was amenable. Unfortunately, there were a lot of questions I wanted to ask, but the meeting wasn’t that long. I did get intimidated when I met him. There were questions I wanted to ask him about his personal affairs, but I just froze. I thought, ‘OK, I’ll get another chance.’ I never got that chance.
It’s surprising we haven’t heard more about the Scientology connection. You write that Jackson’s involvement with the church helps explain his marriage to Lisa Marie.
The media hasn’t picked up on that. I think when people read the book to see the role of the church, they’re gonna be shocked. Because Michael’s marriage to Lisa Marie was strongly influenced by the Church of Scientology. These were the days before Tom Cruise. They wanted to make Michael Jackson the de facto leader of the church, the figurehead; and it didn’t work out. It is a powerful part of the book.
Where were you when you heard the news of Michael’s death, and what was your reaction?
I was at my home in the mountains in Canada. I started getting calls — from CBS, ABC, CNN. I decided not to do any interviews those first 10 days. I wanted to see the way this would play out. There were so many journalists who hadn’t been on the case in years who were vying for the spotlight. I’ve always said I want to let the work stand for itself.
Your book must have been printed and ready to go.
They had to stop the presses, literally. I spent four or five days writing the last chapter. Regarding his autopsy, everyone is asking me what it will reveal. My answer is, I’m not a coroner. My opinion doesn’t matter here. I just document things — I don’t want to make predictions. Yes, I did predict he had six months to live. Unfortunately, my prediction came true. I had access to his private medical records, to people in his camp, and it was very disturbing. I was amazed when his 50-date residency was announced. Even Michael was. He thought he was signing for 10 concerts, but he was forced by his handlers, who were drooling at the prospect of cashing in. They never really cared about Michael. About the autopsy, I’m not even going to look at it, because I know it was greed that killed Michael Jackson. People took advantage of his naivete for years, and that’s the real tragedy.