Michael Jackson’s mom, siblings fear they may lose lawsuit
By Bill Zwecker May 2, 2013 10:15PM
Updated: June 4, 2013 6:03AM
There are lots of jitters among members of Michael Jackson’s family this week — serious concerns their mega-million-dollar wrongful death lawsuit against the AEG concert promoters is not going their way.
Family insiders say matriarch Katherine Jackson, who has been leading the charge in the case, and her children — especially Randy, Rebbie, Jackie and Jermaine — now fear they could easily lose the case.
A major coup for the AEG legal team was provided by the revelation by RadarOnline of a damning document contradicting the opening statement by the Jacksons’ lawyer. The attorney made a big point of saying how so many people — including Michael Jackson’s family members — were very much aware of the king of pop’s serious drug addiction problems.
However, back in 2007, after People magazine ran a story claiming Michael’s brothers and mother had staged an intervention to get him into rehab, Katherine Jackson and her other sons denied it. Going further, they then signed an official statement denying they had arranged an intervention and also that Michael had any problems with drugs or alcohol.
A Jackson family source told this column Thursday. “The AEG folks have got to be very happy about this.”
LOHAN LOSES AGAIN: Though Lindsay Lohan’s dad, Michael, claims the actress was unaware Morningside Recovery was an unapproved — and unlicensed — rehab facility, LiLo’s decision to enter the Newport, Calif., clinic got her into hot water with both the prosecutor and judge who had ordered her 90-day return to counseling, beginning this week.
Turns out, Lohan was approved to go to the Long Island, N.Y.-based Seafield clinic and never requested a transfer to Morningside that likely would have been denied.
GOING RETRO: As we move into the summer movie season, there’s lots of anticipation over Baz Luhrmann’s new film of “The Great Gatsby,” starring Leonardo DiCaprio, Carey Mulligan, Tobey Maguire and Joel Edgerton, opening next Friday. Part of the “summer of Gatsby” buzz will be felt at a couple of private fetes — including a bash at Untitled on Sunday, featuring flappers and great ’20s-era music, and a Monday post-screening party at “Roaring ’20s”-themed Maxim’s, with antique cars and period-appropriate tunes selected by bandleader Stanley Paul.
BACKSTAGE BUZZ: Like many big stars, Beyonce demands special contract riders for her “Mrs Carter” tour that include such things as a freshly painted dressing room, a big supply of healthy snacks, gourmet bottled water and brand new toilet seats. But the pop sensation also insists the backstage crew wear 100 percent cotton clothing — so as not to aggrevate Beyonce’s allegies — and provide Renova red toilet paper, which costs $7.99 for a two-roll package. Talk about tony tissue!
BOOK IT! There is a lot of excitement at the Waukegan Public Library. Not only has the Far North suburban library been chosen as one of the recipients of the 2013 National Medal for Museum and Library Service, the library’s officials just learned they will be presented the award by first lady Michelle Obama herself in a White House ceremony on May 8.
ANOTHER HONOR: Congrats to Chicago’s Merit School of Music — selected as a finalist for the 2013 National Arts & Humanities Youth Program Award for its accomplishments in youth after-school and out-of-school arts and humanities learning programs. If the school wins, the prize will be presented at the White House by Michelle Obama in August — along with a $10,000 grant.
† Mike Ditka will be the special guest speaker at the Chicago Lighthouse’s annual “Seeing What’s Possible” dinner May 16 at the Four Seasons Hotel, with Gov. Pat Quinn and U.S. Rep. Danny Davis serving as honorary co-chairs. The evening will honor the Harris Family Foundation and retired Cook County judge Nicholas Pomaro.
† A fund-raiser is being held next Friday, May 10, at Joe’s Bar on Weed Street to benefit the victims of the devastating explostion in West, Texas, that killed 14 and injured many. The evening will feature Texas music from country crooner Stoney Larue, popular Texas beer Shiner Premium and kolaches — a special pastry for which West has become known. For more information, go to joesbar.com
SEEN ON THE SCENE: Enjoying our brief summer temps Wednesday night, the Bulls’ Jimmy Butler was spotted on the patio at Mercadito on West Kinzie. … “Mr. Cub” Ernie Banks was seen lunching Thursday at O’Brien’s Restaurant & Bar in Old Town. … Fans of the Hawks’ Marian Hossa spied him making the scene at Roka Akor. … “Game of Thrones” star Natalie Dormer dined at River West hotspot Nellcote. … Not surprisingly, the crowd at RPM Italian loved seeing supermodel Cindy Crawford hanging out with pals in the bar area Wednesday night. … The Brooklyn Nets’ Deron Williams chowed down on planked salmon in the upstairs dining room at Tavern on Rush. … Sun-Times columnist Laura Washington and Dr. Sidney Weissman moderated an important Chicago Headline Club “Conversation on Mental Health” Thursday at Columbia College — a frank collection of first-hand accounts shared by David Axelrod, Clarence Page and Perri Small.