John Branca Interview - talks about MJ and Estate

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Offline finfin

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John Branca Interview - talks about MJ and Estate

  • on: August 02, 2011, 04:54:37 PM


http://www.mjjcommunity.com/forum/threads/117975-John-Branca-Interview-talks-about-MJ-and-Estate

 John Branca Interview - talks about MJ and Estate
THE PRINCE OF ROCK

It doesn't take a telescope to see the stars circling around entertainment lawyer John Branca.

 

Photo courtesy of John Branca
“If I do nothing else in my career except [turning around] the Jackson estate, I can say I did a great fucking job.” —John Branca August 2011
by Stan Sinberg

John Branca was vacationing in Cabo San Lucas with his family on June 25, 2009, when he received the news that Michael Jackson was dead. He couldn't believe it. The self-proclaimed King of Pop had just rehired the entertainment lawyer eight days earlier, the latest chapter in their three-decades-long mostly-on, sometimes-off relationship. The pair had a storied history. Jackson was best man at Branca's first wedding (accompanied by Bubbles the chimpanzee, wearing a tux) in 1987. (Little Richard officiated.) The attorney, in turn, was instrumental in both Jackson's famous 1985 purchase of ATV Music Publishing, which included in its catalog some 250 Beatles songs--and the merger, a decade later, of Jackson's ATV Music with Sony Music. Perhaps most intriguing, Branca had persuaded Jackson to release his "Thriller" music video after Jehovah's Witness church elders informed the singer, who belonged to the denomination at the time, that they disapproved of the production because they felt the werewolf and dancing zombies it featured promoted "demonology." Faced with the prospect of trashing the $1.2 million video (the average budget for a music video at the time was a mere $50,000), Branca quickly fabricated a tale that actor Bela Lugosi, one of Jackson's idols, had been a deeply religious man who didn't approve of vampires and put a disclaimer to that effect at the beginning of his Dracula film. Jackson bought the story, placed a similar disclaimer at the beginning of "Thriller," and the rest is music-video history.

When Branca returned from Mexico to Los Angeles, he still didn't know whether Jackson had revised his 2002 will, which named Branca, along with long-time music producer John McClain, as coexecutors of Jackson's estate. Branca hadn't worked for Jackson since 2006, when he quit because he felt the singer was taking advice from people who didn't have Jackson's interests in mind. Today, Branca won't elaborate, saying only that he believed he couldn't do his job if his client wouldn't listen to him.

In the days after the pop superstar's death, it seemed as if everyone who ever met Jackson was hijacking a TV camera to talk into. But not Branca, who after this long in the business knows that the best way to deal with stars' egos and out-sized lives is to keep your own in check. As he puts it, "One of the reasons I think I've been successful over the years is discretion, privacy, and protecting clients' confidences."

He's also willing to do whatever it takes to close a deal. "I've been charming, ruthless, an asshole," he declares, characterizing himself as the guy you give the ball to in the fourth quarter with a minute left.

Until the battle over the Jackson estate captured the world's attention, Branca was better known for representing some of the biggest names in rock 'n' roll. His client list has included 29 members in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame--among them the Rolling Stones, the Doors, the Beach Boys, the Bee Gees, Fleetwood Mac, Aerosmith, Carlos Santana, and ZZ Top--plus the Backstreet Boys, Alicia Keys, and Nickelback. But entertainment law wasn't even on his mind back in 1975, when the New York native graduated from UCLA law school and began doing estate planning. Then he read a profile of Elton John in Time magazine that spotlighted entertainment lawyers, and it set off a bell. "I instantly recognized it as what I should be doing," Branca says. Shortly thereafter, he joined the Century City firm that is now Ziffren Brittenham.

Branca credits his father, John, a gregarious and popular local politician, as the source of his "people skills" and his mother, Barbara Werle, for teaching him about "ambition." She was a dancer who occasionally appeared on The Ed Sullivan Show, and when Branca was five she left to pursue her show-business dreams on the West Coast. He joined her in California when he turned eleven.

Although Branca's name isn't recognizable to the average music fan, he's influenced almost every facet of the business, from the way concert tours are organized and tickets are sold to merchandising and the distribution of royalties.

One game-changer, for example, was his 2005 deal for the rap-metal band Korn. In a traditional contract arrangement, the record company is only involved in promoting a band's CD, leaving the group to handle all of its touring and merchandising arrangements. Under terms Branca brokered for Korn, the band and its record label EMI became partners in everything, creating a synergy between them. That model has since become the norm. Similarly, until Branca put together the deal for the Rolling Stones's "Steel Wheels" tour in 1989, it was standard for each stop on a band's tour to be handled by a different concert promoter. Placing the entire tour under one promoter's control, which, of course, streamlines the entire operation, can also be lucrative for the attorneys involved. (Entertainment lawyers typically receive a percentage of contract advances, future royalties, or both.)

Away from the office, the 60-year-old Branca could pass for a rock 'n' roller himself, with his longish wavy hair, casual white T-shirt, black jacket, and jeans. Much of his persona seems to straddle the line between the worlds of business and show biz: He combines a boyish smile and self-effacing charm with an authoritative negotiating style. The bulk of his professional life has been spent among music megastars, but he still gets bug-eyed with excitement when a memorabilia dealer brings him one of the two known remaining baseballs signed by all of the Beatles. (Branca already owns the other one.) His uncle, Ralph Branca, pitched for the Brooklyn Dodgers in the 1947 World Series and in 1951 gave up Bobby Thomson's famous "Shot Heard 'Round the World" home run that delivered the pennant to the New York Giants.

Over the years, Branca has also been busily helping clients acquire and sell music catalogs. He handled the sale of Berry Gordy Jr.'s Jobete Music to EMI, and Sony/ATV Music's acquisition of the Leiber Stoller catalog, which included songs made famous by Elvis Presley ("Jailhouse Rock" and "Hound Dog"), the Drifters ("On Broadway"), the Clovers ("Love Potion No. 9"), and the Coasters ("Yakety Yak" and "Charlie Brown"). More recently, he worked for one of the final bidders (Sony/ATV and another company) for the Warner Music Group, which was sold in May for $3.3 billion to Access Industries. In June he was reviewing deal terms for the sale of EMI, the world's fourth largest music company and the record label for Katy Perry, the Beatles, and Pink Floyd.

A generation earlier, it was a client of Branca who made headlines with one of the most famous and controversial music deals of all time: Michael Jackson's acquisition of the publishing rights to ATV Music, which included some 250 Beatles songs, including "Yesterday," "Help!" and "Let It Be." When the deal came down, there was some public grumbling from Paul McCartney, but the artist never seriously bid for the catalog, and later he and Jackson remained friends. John Lennon's widow, Yoko Ono, who also didn't bid, remarked that she was happy the rights now belonged to Jackson, a fellow songwriter.

At one point, Branca says, he had a handshake agreement to acquire the catalog from Australian businessman Robert Holmes à Court, only to discover that the seller had turned around and struck a deal with a rival bidder. "He fucked me," is how Branca puts it. Then the attorney learned that one of the financiers of the rival deal was a colleague he'd done business with over the years.

"I went to him and asked him to pull the financing," Branca recalls. The colleague agreed, effectively killing the deal with Jackson's competitor, Martin Bandier, then co-owner of The Entertainment Company.

With no ready buyer, Holmes à Court promptly phoned Branca from London and invited him to fly there to jump-start their earlier agreement. "I told him to go fuck himself," Branca says. This was a risky move: Instead of following the usual procedure and waiting until the deal was signed to start due diligence on any outstanding accounting and legal issues, Branca had already invested more than a million dollars in fees to resolve them in advance.

Over the next several days, Holmes à Court called Branca back several times. The lawyer remained noncommittal, even though, he admits, "My ass was on the line." Finally he agreed to fly across the Atlantic, but warned that he'd stay only 24 hours. "I told him if this deal didn't happen while I was there, to never, ever call me again."

Playing hard to get, Branca says, was part bargaining tactic, part payback, and partly to ensure that Holmes à Court wouldn't pull the same stunt again.

Bandier, now chairman and CEO of Sony/ATV, says he thought his company still had the inside track. But then Branca upped the ante. "He offered to have Jackson perform for Robert Holmes à Court's favorite charity," Bandier laughs. (To clinch the deal, Branca also had to accede to Holmes à Court's eleventh-hour demand that his daughter receive the copyright to "Penny Lane" as a "souvenir.")

After losing out on the Fab Four's catalog, Bandier told his partner, "Next time we bid for something like this, we're hiring John." Which is just what they did when they went after CBS Songs.

Judging the worth of a music catalog is part analysis, part instinct, says Bandier. "John has a great sense of the value of a song--which songs will last for a long time, how certain songs can be licensed for commercials."

These were the very qualities that propelled Branca into the "finals" when, in 2008, the Rodgers & Hammerstein estate went looking for someone to handle selling the composers' catalog. All five other contenders were investment banking firms.

During the interview process Branca recounted to Mary Rodgers and Alice Hammerstein how his show-biz mom had been in a touring production of Rodgers & Hammerstein's The Sound of Music (she played the baroness) and took him, as a boy, to see the show on Broadway. "It was one of the formative experiences of my youth," he gushes. "I would've done that [catalog] project for free."

"At first I thought we were [considering] Branca as a courtesy" to the entertainment lawyer, says Joshua S. Rubenstein, the estate executor for Richard Rodgers and counsel for the estate. "But it was a family estate," he continues. "We wanted someone who would take good care of the legacy, and John blew us away with his passion and interest. For us, it wasn't just about the money."

Even so, Rubenstein credits Branca with creating strong bidding interest in the catalog, notwithstanding the bottom falling out of the economy that year. "Branca sold it for 95 percent of our highest valuation," he exults.

After Michael Jackson's death, no will more recent than the 2002 document turned up, so Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Mitchell Beckloff eventually granted Branca and producer John McClain temporary coexecutor status.

Initially, Jackson's mother, Katherine, fought to gain control of the estate. She is the guardian of her son's three children and the beneficiary of 40 percent of the estate, and she accused Branca and McClain of conflicts of interest. After Katherine Jackson filed several unsuccessful legal challenges, the dispute blew over, and she has since praised the pair's management of the estate.

Adam F. Streisand, chairman of the trust and estate litigation practice at Loeb & Loeb in Los Angeles, represented Katherine Jackson's interests until recently. "John Branca deftly handled the estate and was very effective in stemming the flow of red ink he found," says Streisand, "and he was always amenable to requests I made on Mrs. Jackson's behalf." Other attorneys she has employed over the course of the proceedings declined to comment.

Of course, Jackson's finances were a shambles when he died: Various reports estimated that the entertainer was more than $400 million in the red from a combination of extravagant spending and high-interest loans.

In the weeks before Michael Jackson officially rehired Branca, the attorney had several discussions with Jackson's representatives about what he wanted to accomplish. So as his client's coexecutor, Branca felt he was privy to Jackson's wishes and had a mandate for a three-pronged mission: to get the estate out from under its crushing debt; to provide for Michael's children and loved ones; and to restore the King of Pop's legacy to its former glory. It was a gargantuan task, but the fact that Jackson had recently reached out to him again made it "emotionally fulfilling," Branca says.

The estate's first major commercial decision was to make a documentary about the rehearsal process Jackson had been involved in for an unprecedented 50-concert series in London. Some family members objected that Jackson wouldn't have allowed a rehearsal tape to be released. "But we looked at the tapes," Branca says, "and we saw the Michael we loved--the perfectionist--the one who had great humanity and great respect for his fellow dancers and musicians. And that's why we put the movie out.'" This Is It became the largest-grossing concert documentary in history.

Branca and McClain further transformed the estate's fortunes by refinancing costly debts and putting together deals to open Jackson-themed Cirque du Soleil shows (one in Las Vegas and another traveling version); launch an interactive museum and a Michael Jackson-themed lounge at Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas; create a best-selling dance game for Ubisoft Entertainment; release ten albums of both old and unreleased music in the coming years; and ramp up Jackson's profile on Facebook.

The result: In the 15 months after Jackson's death, the estate generated $310 million in revenue. By comparison, the Elvis Presley estate, previously considered the "gold standard" in the entertainment business, earned profits of about $25 million over the same period.

"If I do nothing else in my career except having done this for the Jackson estate, I can say I did a great fucking job," Branca crows.

As reverently as Branca speaks about his deceased client, though, the attorney won't comment on the record about other members of Jackson's family. Suffice it to say he feels unappreciated by the clan, and believes some of its members aren't acting in Michael's behalf.

Sometimes in this industry, of course, the best deal is the deal not made. The litigator representing Branca and McClain as executors of the Jackson estate is Howard Weitzman, a partner with Kinsella Weitzman Iser Kump & Aldisert in Santa Monica. Weitzman tells how several years ago, when the singer's financial problems were getting out of control, Jackson was advised to sell his interest in the ATV Music catalog that includes Beatles tunes. Branca told him, "If there's one thing you should never do, it's sell that." Jackson listened, and the catalog remains one of his estate's most valued assets.

Branca could surely retire tomorrow and live quite comfortably with his second wife, Linda, and two young sons in their Beverly Hills mansion filled with Italian antiques--but he has no plans to stop working. "I love being a lawyer," he explains. Perhaps more to the point, though, he's a fan of the music and the musicians.

That's one of the reasons that several years ago Branca helped form the Musicians Assistance Program to aid artists suffering from alcohol and addiction issues. It was later merged into MusiCares, with an expanded mission of helping musicians in need to obtain a host of services, including medical and dental care and funeral arrangements; Branca is now its chairman emeritus.
He's also aided musicians from earlier generations who either lost copyrights to their songs or weren't being paid proper royalties. Among them: Don Henley, John Fogerty, the Beach Boys, and members of the Doors.

Between juggling clients of the current generation and caretaking the legacies and affairs of past ones, John Branca will stay busy, keeping the music alive.

Stan Sinberg is a San Francisco-based writer who has worked as a columnist, satirist, and radio commentator.

http://www.callawyer.com/story.cfm?eid=917175&evid=1
 

"Consciousness expresses itself through creation. This world we live in is the dance of the creator." Michael Jackson

Offline AnaMarcia

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Very interesting this interview.

Indeed, Branca and Mclain were always very discreet and caring to the property of Michael with great zeal. It was reported in various media that Michael's fortune has doubled since his death and now he can be considered a billionaire.

It is quite intriguing: they are fulfilling the three strands  very well. They  managed to double the assets of Michael, pay their debts and raise his legacy  and his name at the top again.

But who is paying their wages? Does anyone know how this works?
How do they know exactly how to act and what to do? And if they are doing good, for the family's so upset with them? especially Joe and Latoya?

But,  Is Branca so confident to knowing about the hoax?  confused/ :-\
« Last Edit: August 02, 2011, 05:22:04 PM by AnaMarcia »
"Tell the angels no... Heaven can wait"!

Offline paula-c

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in this interview Branca is the "super lawyer" to save the family from disaster after extravagant spending, loans, debts that leave Michael after his "death"

Offline suspicious mind

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ok in the case of your average joe the executor does recieve something for their trouble. does anyone know what that might be , a flat amount, a percentage ? but most often everthing is done within a certain amount of time and it is over. in this case with the catalog ect. it is a bisically never ending thing unless they sell the catalog , or not :-\

also , did i read that right that the person whom mcclain did dirty to get the catalog is now a high up in sony/atv afraid/ :o
« Last Edit: August 02, 2011, 10:27:52 PM by suspicious mind »
"I am sending you out like sheep among wolves. Therefore be shrewd as serpents and as innocent as doves."  




Why not just tell people I'm an alien from Mars? Tell them I eat live chickens and do a voodoo dance at midnight. They'll believe anything you say, because you're a reporter. But if I, Michael Jackson, were to say, "I'm an alien from Mars and I eat live chickens and do a voodoo dance at midnight," people would say, "Oh, man, that Michael Jackson is nuts. He's cracked up. You can't believe a single word that comes out of his mouth."

Offline RK

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Yes you read right suspicious. Marty Bandier is not just high up in Sony...he's the boss. Oh it's such a tangled web the puppet master weaves, and to what side of the puzzle do the pieces fall, good or bad is my dilema. As yet, I'm still undecided. But Branca would definitely be up for involvement in a hoax death in my opinion. Interesting quote about Branca being willing to do what ever it takes to close a deal. Dead celebrity equates to muchas dollarz for all involved. And the money trail leads all the way down the yellow brick road to this point in the funnel.
What's with the scarf  around his neck. Police line do not cross. Seems like it's like that in hoax investigation land too. We can't get past this point of Branca to what's behind him. Would that be the man himself?
« Last Edit: August 02, 2011, 11:32:58 PM by RK »

Offline Grace

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Nope, Bandier is not CEO of Sony.
Bandier is CEO of Sony / ATV.

CEO of Sony is Mr. Stringer.
Quote
Sir Howard Stringer (born February 19, 1942) is a Welsh-born American businessman and the chairman, president and CEO of Sony Corporation.

Stringer was born in Cardiff, Wales,
[...]
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Howard_Stringer


Gives a whole lot of a new meaning to the "Cardiff giant".

Blessings.
Create your day. Create the most astounding year of your life. Be the change you want to see in the world! L.O.V.E.
***********************************************************************************************
"I am tired, I am really tired of manipulation." Michael Jackson, Harlem, New York, NY, July 6, 2002
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******* Let's tear the walls in the brains of this world down.*******

Time to BE.

Offline MJonmind

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It would seem that Bandier's vendetta would be against Branca who dumped him, and not MJ, who was simply a rival bidder.
If Bandier wants MJ's catalogue, and is paying Branca to steer MJ's estate into trouble, and is working together with Murdock, perhaps Mattola, Sneddon to bring down Michael and actually murdered Michael, then who is arranging hoax elements and clues to make us think all they do is a lie and part of the hoax?  What benefit would it be to have only a few thousand out of millions of fans believe it is a hoax. How can the family be smiling about it? On and on.... :-\

Quote
RK
Oh it's such a tangled web the puppet master weaves, and to what side of the puzzle do the pieces fall, good or bad is my dilema.


Yes, now it's my turn to feel discouraged.  I like your illustration of a double-sided puzzle, one side murder and the other hoax, and only one side is true. This is like Prince's book he was reading, Choose your own adventure/story, or something like that.

Offline ForstAMoon

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But who is paying their wages? Does anyone know how this works?
How do they know exactly how to act and what to do? And if they are doing good, for the family's so upset with them? especially Joe and Latoya?



Typically the executors are getting some pre-agreed % rate of what the Estate made under their management. I think there was an article about it, including TMZ posting.

Offline hesouttamylife

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I don’t care how wonderfully intricate this web is weaved, I have never trusted Branca and never will.  as far as what they get, it’s 10% off the top (officially).  Who’s to say what they get. They are the managers and the keepers of the gate.  They get theirs before anyone ele gets anything, including the family.  I believe the family’s stipend is set at a certain figure not percentage, which to me stinks to the high heavens.
"Don't stop this child, He's the father of man
Don't cross his way, He's part of the plan
I am that child, but so are you
You've just forgotten, Just lost the clue.”

MJ "Magical Child"
Still Rocking my World…
   and leaving me Speechless!

“True goodbyes are the ones never said

Offline Grace

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Interesting role of Branca and Bandier in the purchase of the catalogue:

http://www.thewrap.com/media/article/michael-jackson-3-getting-beatles-cataglogue-22422?page=0,0
« Last Edit: August 03, 2011, 10:36:27 AM by Grace »
Create your day. Create the most astounding year of your life. Be the change you want to see in the world! L.O.V.E.
***********************************************************************************************
"I am tired, I am really tired of manipulation." Michael Jackson, Harlem, New York, NY, July 6, 2002
***********************************************************************************************
******* Let's tear the walls in the brains of this world down.*******

Time to BE.

Offline voiceforthesilent

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Thank you for sharing this with us.

I know there is suspicion over Branca because of his dirty past with Michael. However, he has also done Michael a lot of good. And it was Michael that reconnected with him (or so we were told).

Yes, the Executors get a percentage but that is the way it works and why shouldn't they get paid for doing a good job? That is their business. I would be willing to bet they earn every penny of what they make.

Let's see what they have done.

1) They have managed to help turn Michael's legacy around
2) They have stabilized the lawsuits. In fact we are not hearing of new lawsuits daily like we were. In fact, many of the lawsuits were thrown out or denied...like Ramone Bain's or all of the "I am Michael's wife" claims.
3) They have brought back under the Estate's control Heal the World Foundation which is awesome (IMO)
4) They have garnered the biggest contract in history for an artist
5) They have paid off Encino (when it was days away from foreclosure)
6) They are paying for extensive renovations at the Encino home
7) They are paying for the family to stay in a mansion that costs millions a month
 8) They negotiated the Cirque shows to where Michael's Estate gets 50% of the profits
9) And Katherine and the kids do get a monthly allowance in the millions


That is off the top of my head. I think they are doing a great job and I think they have Michael's best interest at heart. Of course time will tell but after 2 years I think it has shown in their favor.

We do need to remember though that a lot of this (Cirque, etc) Michael was already working on. But whether Michael is alive or not Branca is clearly carrying on Michael's wishes with great passion.

As far as Bandier, he was hired before June 25, 2009...Branca had nothing to do with that deal. And, from everything I read, Michael was thrilled to have him on board (or so the article goes). Bandier wasn't hired until Michael gave his full approval as 50% owner of Sony/ATV.

I have to work now but when I have time I'll dig out some of those articles and post them.

Hang in there - it's been a long windy road. But the truth will prevail in the end. In the meantime we shouldn't accuse too quickly.

Blessings and peace to you all. Have a blessed day :)


« Last Edit: August 03, 2011, 10:33:10 AM by voiceforthesilent »
I'm proud to be a child of God and a member of MJ's Army of L.O.V.E.
 
"Press coverage of my life is like [watching] a fictitious movie...like watching science fiction. It's not true." ~Michael Jackson (2005)

"You should not believe everything you read. You are missing the most important revelations". Craig Harvey 3-15-2012

Offline voiceforthesilent

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One thing that I was thinking about while reading this article is that Branca is not afraid to take chances. He has shown that, like Michael, he seems to understand human nature and he is not afraid to call a bluff.

It would not surprise me to find out that Branca helped Michael work out the details for this hoax - from a legal standpoint. After all, he seems to be a betting man and it appears as though he usually wins.

In fact...at one point I wondered if Branca was TS. I've not been too convinced of TS in the past but the fact remains that he hasn't been debunked after these two years. And, he is an intelligent and patient man. Not to turn the conversation to TS but perhaps Branca is more involved than we know.

Blessings.
I'm proud to be a child of God and a member of MJ's Army of L.O.V.E.
 
"Press coverage of my life is like [watching] a fictitious movie...like watching science fiction. It's not true." ~Michael Jackson (2005)

"You should not believe everything you read. You are missing the most important revelations". Craig Harvey 3-15-2012

Offline TheMoonIsDancing

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Thank you for sharing this with us.

I know there is suspicion over Branca because of his dirty past with Michael. However, he has also done Michael a lot of good. And it was Michael that reconnected with him (or so we were told).

Yes, the Executors get a percentage but that is the way it works and why shouldn't they get paid for doing a good job? That is their business. I would be willing to bet they earn every penny of what they make.

Let's see what they have done.

1) They have managed to help turn Michael's legacy around
2) They have stabilized the lawsuits. In fact we are not hearing of new lawsuits daily like we were. In fact, many of the lawsuits were thrown out or denied...like Ramone Bain's or all of the "I am Michael's wife" claims.
3) They have brought back under the Estate's control Heal the World Foundation which is awesome (IMO)
4) They have garnered the biggest contract in history for an artist
5) They have paid off Encino (when it was days away from foreclosure)
6) They are paying for extensive renovations at the Encino home
7) They are paying for the family to stay in a mansion that costs millions a month
 8) They negotiated the Cirque shows to where Michael's Estate gets 50% of the profits
9) And Katherine and the kids do get a monthly allowance in the millions


That is off the top of my head. I think they are doing a great job and I think they have Michael's best interest at heart. Of course time will tell but after 2 years I think it has shown in their favor.

We do need to remember though that a lot of this (Cirque, etc) Michael was already working on. But whether Michael is alive or not Branca is clearly carrying on Michael's wishes with great passion.

As far as Bandier, he was hired before June 25, 2009...Branca had nothing to do with that deal. And, from everything I read, Michael was thrilled to have him on board (or so the article goes). Bandier wasn't hired until Michael gave his full approval as 50% owner of Sony/ATV.

I have to work now but when I have time I'll dig out some of those articles and post them.

Hang in there - it's been a long windy road. But the truth will prevail in the end. In the meantime we shouldn't accuse too quickly.

Blessings and peace to you all. Have a blessed day :)




I agree! I find it hard to believe that after more than 40 years in Show Business, Michael isn't an expert in spotting a thief 100 miles away. I think Brance has done an outstanding job for the estate. I do believe that MJ is still alive, and he knew the only way he could get out of debt and take his name back up to the top where it belongs is to 'die'. Its just so brilliant and I think the status of the Estate is the biggest clue that MJ will return soon. I hope I'm correct. Its a risky move but I think it was the ONLY way he could have successfully gotten out of the red. $400 Million dollars in the Red!

Online Andrea

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voiceforthesilent - I agree with you about Branca.  I think Michael chose Branca because he's the best man for the job and the only one who can do what he's done for Michael's "Estate". Michael knows what he's doing.

Offline hesouttamylife

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I’m not convinced that Michael re-hired Branca.  And yes, they should get something for the work they do.  No one is disputing that.  However, for them to get their share off the top before anyone else, gives them a big up on the ante.  There’s no disputing that.  10% of 400 million is let’s see, that's 40 million.  Not a bad return on someone else’ money.  Anyone who’s okay with that then fine.  I’m not.
"Don't stop this child, He's the father of man
Don't cross his way, He's part of the plan
I am that child, but so are you
You've just forgotten, Just lost the clue.”

MJ "Magical Child"
Still Rocking my World…
   and leaving me Speechless!

“True goodbyes are the ones never said

Offline MJonmind

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I knew you guys would come through in helping me see the other side. bearhug
I always have to go back to basics.

1) Michael has hoaxed his death because of 10,000 tiny clues (that can't all be explained away and coincidental) but as a mass are powerfully a proof.
2) He has to have experts in a wide variety of fields to pull this hoax off. Branca is the best lawyer--who else would MJ hire to manage something so complex. (Any lawyer choice would come under criticism no matter what they did.)  MJ never shied away from approaching and asking his selection of expert to work with and was never (not that I know of) refused. He fired and distanced himself from many a person for sometimes the slightest of infractions, since he was careful, shrewd, intuitive and aware.  This hoax is about teamwork of people who love and believe in what Michael is and stands for.
3) The hoax journey with Michael incognito and forum friends has been breathtaking and a rollercoaster ride that none of us would trade for anything. We collectively in this forum and elsewhere have given all our expertise and most intense brainstorming for this task.  There's still a BAM to look forward to.  And if Michael is dead and there is no hoax, then we should all pack up and go back to our regular lives (for me more boring life).  Still for me, this forum and the hoax has been a lens through which I have learned more about the world around me, and I have loved every minute of it. So as long as Souza keeps this forum going, and at least a few people still come here, I will stay.
4) If he has hoaxed his death (I believe), then I trust he will keep his promises, and I also trust in TS's, Back's, Front's and P,P,B's words of verifying MJ's words and promises. Michael IS or has sent these'friends' to give us encouragement for this challenging adventure that is definately NOT for the faint of heart.
 

Offline hesouttamylife

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Please show me where Katherine gets an allowance in the MILLIONS.  Enlighten me, I  admit that I don’t know all the basics but I'll swear on the Bible that  I’ve never seen that figure mentioned ANYWHERE.  Please point me to it.
"Don't stop this child, He's the father of man
Don't cross his way, He's part of the plan
I am that child, but so are you
You've just forgotten, Just lost the clue.”

MJ "Magical Child"
Still Rocking my World…
   and leaving me Speechless!

“True goodbyes are the ones never said

Offline CC

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that scarf is real???
POLICE LINE DO NOT CROSS
 ;D
Some men see things as they are and say: WHY?
I dream things that never were and say: WHY NOT?

Offline voiceforthesilent

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Please show me where Katherine gets an allowance in the MILLIONS.  Enlighten me, I  admit that I don’t know all the basics but I'll swear on the Bible that  I’ve never seen that figure mentioned ANYWHERE.  Please point me to it.

Fair enough - I guess I was thinking combined with paying for the house, etc. But, it's actually a little more than $86,000 per month. Not too shabby considering Mrs Jackson doesn't have to pay a mortgage.

Can you show me where the Estate attorneys get their money off the top before anyone else?


http://articles.cnn.com/2009-09-17/entertainment/michael.jackson.family.allowance_1_katherine-jackson-judge-mitchell-beckloff-michael-jackson?_s=PM:SHOWBIZ

$86,000 monthly allowance for Michael Jackson's mom, kidsMICHAEL JACKSON            Share this on:   Facebook Twitter Digg delicious reddit MySpace StumbleUpon LinkedIn             September 17, 2009|By Alan Duke CNN
Michael Jackson died June 25, 2009, of an apparent drug overdose.Michael Jackson's mother and his three children receive an allowance totaling more than $86,000 a month, according to court documents released Thursday.
The money given them by the Michael Jackson estate is in addition to the maintenance of the home -- which is owned by the estate -- in Encino, California, where Katherine Jackson lives with her grandchildren, the papers said.
The Los Angeles County judge overseeing the probate of Jackson's will ordered that the petitions for their monthly allowance be made public -- although with some details removed. Those papers were released Thursday.

Blessings  bearhug
I'm proud to be a child of God and a member of MJ's Army of L.O.V.E.
 
"Press coverage of my life is like [watching] a fictitious movie...like watching science fiction. It's not true." ~Michael Jackson (2005)

"You should not believe everything you read. You are missing the most important revelations". Craig Harvey 3-15-2012

Offline Mish1981

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Let's not forget that Branca was also helping MJ with the little hoax's he did in the past (Elephant Man bones & chamber). Yes they were very little but I think that was a starting point of them working together to see what together they were capable of doing. Dileo was also in that mix up and he was also in it at the beginning in 2009. It makes perfect sense that MJ would bring Branca and Dileo back to help him with this hoax. I've mentioned this in other threads as well.

~Mish~

"Breathe in waves of doubt, bitter in your mouth" - Toad The Wet Sprocket

Offline hesouttamylife

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Please show me where Katherine gets an allowance in the MILLIONS.  Enlighten me, I  admit that I don’t know all the basics but I'll swear on the Bible that  I’ve never seen that figure mentioned ANYWHERE.  Please point me to it.

Fair enough - I guess I was thinking combined with paying for the house, etc. But, it's actually a little more than $86,000 per month. Not too shabby considering Mrs Jackson doesn't have to pay a mortgage.

Can you show me where the Estate attorneys get their money off the top before anyone else?


http://articles.cnn.com/2009-09-17/entertainment/michael.jackson.family.allowance_1_katherine-jackson-judge-mitchell-beckloff-michael-jackson?_s=PM:SHOWBIZ

$86,000 monthly allowance for Michael Jackson's mom, kidsMICHAEL JACKSON            Share this on:   Facebook Twitter Digg delicious reddit MySpace StumbleUpon LinkedIn             September 17, 2009|By Alan Duke CNN
Michael Jackson died June 25, 2009, of an apparent drug overdose.Michael Jackson's mother and his three children receive an allowance totaling more than $86,000 a month, according to court documents released Thursday.
The money given them by the Michael Jackson estate is in addition to the maintenance of the home -- which is owned by the estate -- in Encino, California, where Katherine Jackson lives with her grandchildren, the papers said.
The Los Angeles County judge overseeing the probate of Jackson's will ordered that the petitions for their monthly allowance be made public -- although with some details removed. Those papers were released Thursday.

Blessings  bearhug



ahem, he’s an attorney first, right?  That answers that question.   bearhug
"Don't stop this child, He's the father of man
Don't cross his way, He's part of the plan
I am that child, but so are you
You've just forgotten, Just lost the clue.”

MJ "Magical Child"
Still Rocking my World…
   and leaving me Speechless!

“True goodbyes are the ones never said

Offline voiceforthesilent

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hesouttamylife - you are funny :)
As much as I might tend to agree with you about attorneys, I do know that there are decent ones as well (example: Tom Meserreau). But, agreements are agreements.

Let's not forget that Tom Meserreau also filed a claim with the Estate because he had not gotten his final pay from MJ. If MJ hadn't "died" I'm sure that he wouldn't have sued Michael ever but the point is that he made sure his services were paid for when the opportunity presented itself. That is good business.

We'll just keep our eyes open and pay attention because I'm sure the truth will come out sooner or later. Blessings to you. :)
I'm proud to be a child of God and a member of MJ's Army of L.O.V.E.
 
"Press coverage of my life is like [watching] a fictitious movie...like watching science fiction. It's not true." ~Michael Jackson (2005)

"You should not believe everything you read. You are missing the most important revelations". Craig Harvey 3-15-2012

Offline Snoopy71

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Re: John Branca Interview - talks about MJ and Estate

  • on: December 05, 2011, 08:18:22 AM
John Branca Sheds Light on MiJac – Sony/ATV Rumors

Over the last few weeks rumors have been flying wildly again — this time though, concerning Michael’s personal catalog of music “MiJac.” Many have been deeply concerned Sony/ATV will take control of “MiJac” leaving Michael’s children empty handed

However today,  John Branca puts the record straight.
 
Telling MJNA, “Yes, there is a matching right that Michael granted to Sony/ATV but they only get to administer the catalog for a limited term AND only if they agree to unprecedented favorable terms. We will not relinquish ultimate control and ownership to anyone. We have favorably refinanced the loans on Mijac which will be paid off and the catalog WILL absolutely be passed to Michael’s children as long as we have anything to say about it.”
 
Adding “Sony/ATV is a great company and the Estate owns half of it but no one, not even Sony/ATV, will ever own Mijac while John McClain and I remain in charge.”
 
Branca then went on to explain Sony’s role in Michael’s Estate, “The current Sony team is the one Michael chose to work with on the Thriller 25 release and they are good partners. As stated in the recent court filings, they worked with us to refinance the burdensome debt that had been placed on Michael’s interest in Sony/ATV to very favorable terms, an important achievement which insures that Mijac and Michael’s masters remain secure for the benefit of Michael’s children for years to come.”


http://www.mjjunderground.com/2011/02/21/john-branca-sheds-light-on-mijac-sonyatv-rumors/

Offline voiceforthesilent

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Re: John Branca Interview - talks about MJ and Estate

  • on: December 05, 2011, 09:00:16 AM
Snoopy - thank you for the update. I think paying attention to the finances gives us a great deal of insight. It also continues to show us that Branca is following out Michael's wishes. Yes, he gets a great salary in doing so but I'm sure he's earning it.

Blessings on your day!
I'm proud to be a child of God and a member of MJ's Army of L.O.V.E.
 
"Press coverage of my life is like [watching] a fictitious movie...like watching science fiction. It's not true." ~Michael Jackson (2005)

"You should not believe everything you read. You are missing the most important revelations". Craig Harvey 3-15-2012