LONDON (AP) - A British television channel on Thursday broadcast a documentary about Dr. Conrad Murray that has angered Michael Jackson’s family, in which the doctor paints himself as a well-meaning physician entrapped by the needy star.
Murray was convicted Monday of the singer’s involuntary manslaughter for supplying Jackson with the powerful operating-room anesthetic propofol.
News that U.S. channel MSNBC plans to show the documentary _ titled “Michael Jackson and the Doctor: A Fatal Friendship” _ brought outrage this week from Jackson’s family and executors, who said Murray was getting a prime-time platform to smear Jackson’s reputation without fear of cross-examination. MSNBC said it plans to air the documentary Friday.
On Twitter, brother Jermaine Jackson branded the documentary “shameless.” The singer’s executors, John Branca and John McClain, demanded the program be canceled. MSNBC said it had no comment.
Channel 4 broadcast the documentary under the more sensational title “The Man Who Killed Michael Jackson.” It was preceded by an interview with Murray, conducted eight days before his conviction, by British journalist Steve Hewlett.
Channel 4 said Murray was not receiving any money from the documentary.
Jackson died on June 25, 2009, aged 50, while he was preparing for a series of comeback concerts.
In the interview with Hewlett, Murray said that on the day Jackson died the singer pleaded for the drug to relieve his insomnia, begging “let me have some milk” _ his name for propofol.
The documentary, directed by Tom Roberts, follows Murray over the two years leading up to his conviction, including interviews with the doctor and footage of his legal team preparing their case.
In the film Murray insisted he did not introduce Jackson to propofol and had felt entrapped by the troubled star.
“I went there to take care of a healthy man, who said he was fine, to just keep surveillance in case my kids get sick or I get the flu, help us to choose right, better foods, and wash our hands so we don’t get infected,” Murray said. “But once I got in there I was entrapped.”
Murray said Jackson considered him a friend.
“He felt that I was someone he can trust,” said Murray. “He had very close acquaintances, he spoke about Marlon Brando and his son, Fred Astaire and Ginger. But friends he did not have. He said ‘of all my life, I have found one friend which is you, Dr. Conrad’.”
Producers said they had also sold it to Nine Network in Australia and more than 10 other international broadcasters.
NBC’s “Today” has been broadcasting its own interviews with Murray this week.
Murray is being held in Los Angeles County Jail awaiting sentencing Nov. 29 and could face up to four years in prison and the loss of his medical license.
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