Update, 7:30 p.m. ET: Barbra Streisand issued a statement of apology for her remarks on Michael Jackson and his accusers.
In a tweet, Streisand wrote, "I am profoundly sorry for any pain or misunderstanding I caused by not choosing my words more carefully about Michael Jackson and his victims, because the words as printed do not reflect my true feelings. I didn't mean to dismiss the trauma these boys experienced in any way. Like all survivors of sexual assault, they will have to carry this for the rest of their lives. I feel deep remorse and I hope that James and Wade know that I truly respect and admire them for speaking the truth."
This story was originally published on March 23, 2019.
In an interview with British newspaper The Times, Streisand took a break from discussing dog cloning to share her baffling stance on the documentary. She said she “absolutely” believed the allegations of sexual assault made by James Safechuck and Wade Robson, but simultaneously expressed sympathy for Jackson and questioned the lasting impact of his abuse.
“His sexual needs were his sexual needs, coming from whatever childhood he has or whatever DNA he has. You can say ‘molested,’ but those children, as you heard say, they were thrilled to be there,” Streisand told the Times. “They both married and they both have children, so it didn’t kill them.”
Streisand also placed the majority of the blame on Safechuck and Robson’s parents, saying, “I blame, I guess, the parents, who would allow their children to sleep with him. Why would Michael need these little children dressed like him and in the shows and the dancing and the hats?”
Streisand’s comments drew backlash from many on Twitter, including Leaving Neverland director Dan Reed.
“Is pedophilia tolerated in parts of the entertainment industry?” he asked.
I just want every adult survivor of childhood abuse to know that you’re brave and stronger than anything. Your life trajectory was certainly taken from you, but you made a new path forward in spite of that. You should be supported. Barbra Streisand is wrong.— Michelle (@SoSofieFatale) March 23, 2019
Streisand has yet to respond to the criticism on Twitter.