Michael Jackson remains one of the most written about people in showbiz. During his life Jackson also saw a huge amount of criticism for wearing masks and his bizarre behaviour off stage. As well as this, the star was often criticised for owning a monkey – which he named Bubbles – and his experimentation with plastic surgery. During his time in England Jackson also looked into purchasing the bones of The Elephant MAn. This led to the star was dubbed Wacko Jacko by tabloid newspapers.
In 1997 the 13-time Grammy-award-winning star responded to this hurtful nickname.
Speaking to Barbara Walters on September 7, 1997, Jackson complained to the host about how the press had treated him.
Jackson argued that there should be a line the paparazzi should not be able to cross, including chasing him down the street.
Explaining how he would make this happen, Jackson told Barbara there should be a set of guidelines outlining what “the press should not do”.
Jackson went on: “You should not say [I’m] an animal.
Jackson continued: “You should not say he’s a Jacko – I’m not a Jacko! I’m Jackson.”
When asked further about this nickname, the star hit out at the tabloids that used the name.
He replied: “Wacko Jacko – where’d that come from? Some English tabloid.
“I have a heart and feelings, I feel that when you do it to me. It’s not nice don’t do it. I’m not a Wacko!”
Later in the interview Jackson also told Barbara why he sold photos of his newborn child Prince Jackson.
Defending his actions, he said: “There was a race. There were some illegal pictures out.”
“Illegally, somebody had taken pictures of a baby and [sold it for] millions of dollars! And said: ‘Here is Michael’s son.’ And it wasn’t!”
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This event prompted Jackson to sell photos of his son, so that no other children would be photographed under the false pretence that it was really Prince.
Jackson went on: “So I took the pictures of the baby. And said: ‘They’re forcing me to take these pictures!’
“They have helicopters flying above us, flying over my house, flying over the hospital.
“Even the hospital said: ‘We’ve had every kind of celebrity here, and we’ve never had it like this.'”
Jackson concluded: “So I said here, take [the photos], and I gave the money to charity.”
During the rest of the interview Jackson told Barbara how upset he was when he heard about the death of Princess Diana.
Upon hearing about the royal’s death, Jackson explained he collapsed with grief.
As well as this, the star cancelled one of his concerts in honour of the late Lady.
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