MICHAEL Jackson’s one time side-kick Bubbles the chimp is whiling away his years away from the limelight — occasionally knocking out the odd painti
MICHAEL Jackson’s one time side-kick Bubbles the chimp is whiling away his years away from the limelight — occasionally knocking out the odd painting.
But once upon the time he was the most famous primate on the planet thanks to his intense and frankly odd relationship with the King of Pop.
Back in the day, Bubbles and Jackson, were an inseparable double act.
In fact the singer, who died in 2009 of a drugs overdose, describing the chimp as his first child and reportedly telling his actual children to treat his furry friend like a step-brother.
At night he would tuck him up in a crib next to his own bed as well as allowing him eat at the dinner table and use his own personal toilet.
Even at the studio, while recording Bad, the ape would be sitting in the control room as Jackson laid down his famous tracks.
The plucky primate would also appear in music videos.
Famously, by the tender age of four had learned his master’s signature moonwalk dance.
SHACKED UP IN HOTEL ROOM
And since Jackson could not bear to leave him at home while on world concert tours, the pair would stay together in hotel rooms.
On one occasion, while in the Japanese city of Osaka, the chimp made a visit to City hall where he sipped green tea with dignitaries.
City mayor Yasushi Oshima reportedly recalled he and other officials were “surprised to see the chimpanzee, but we understand he is [Michael’s] good friend”.
But some claim there was a dark side to this seemingly perfect relationship.
We were surprised to see the chimpanzee, but we understand he is [Michael’s] good friend
Osaka city mayor Yasushi Oshima
Jane Goodall, 84, the world’s top primatologist, has alleged the loveable ape had been “beaten” while living with Jackson.
The British expert said Jacko flew into a rage when she confronted him about the alleged abuse.
In 2014, she told TMZ: “I went to see him and we talked about Bubbles. I ticked him off.
“Bubbles is still alive and he’s beautiful. But when he was with Michael he was being beaten.”
Even though Jane did not name Jackson as Bubbles’ abuser, the ex-husband of the star’s sister LaToya has claimed he saw the Thriller singer attacking the defenceless animal.
‘MICHAEL BEAT HIM’
It is said alleged he also self-harmed when he heard of Jackson’s death in 2009 and reportedly pined for the star after he was booted out of his home and sent to a sanctuary.
In a 2003 documentary, Living with Michael Jackson, Jackson told journalist Martin Bashir that Bubbles had become too argumentative and moody and had to go.
The Jackson family has denied Michael abused Bubbles.
Today Bubbles is a 35-year-old and is holed up the Centre for Great Apes, a sanctuary in Wauchula in Florida.
According to reports he has ballooned to 12.5 stone, despite no longer has access to the pots of Haagen-Dazs ice cream he’d scoffed at Michael’s palatial mansion.
And he paints. In 2017 one of his abstract artworks fetched £3000.
But mostly he takes it easy, listening to flute music as his beard greys and a bald spot widens above his brow.
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Meanwhile more child sex abuse allegations have emerged against Jackson following the screening of a new documentary Leaving Neverland which has sent shockwaves across the world after being aired in the US and the UK last week.
Accusers Wade Robson and James “Jimmy” Safechuck both claim they were repeatedly abused by the singer over a number of years.
Jackson strongly denied all allegations of sexual abuse made against him.
His estate has vehemently denounced the documentary.
The credibility of Robson and Safechuck has been attacked and the filmmaker slammed for not including other voices who knew Jackson.
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