The first part of Lifetime’s six-part Surviving R. Kelly docu-series already has people reeling, as they continue to hear the stories about R. Kelly’s reported sexual, mental and physical abuse of various women over the years and from his victims who for the first time have come forward to speak about their experiences.
While there was no shortage of people to talk to about R.Kelly, we did notice that singer John Legend was the only major musician to speak out on R.Kelly so far in the docu-series.
“R. Kelly has brought so much pain to so many people,” Legend says in the docu-series. “#TimesUp for R. Kelly.”
However, according to Dream Hampton, who executive produced the series, Legend was not the only music artist ge asked to take part in Surviving R. Kelly but he was the only one who agreed to do so.
“When it comes to celebrities, It was incredibly difficult to get people who had collaborated [artistically] with Kelly to come forward,” the show’s executive producer, Dream Hampton, told the Detroit Free Press. “We asked Lady Gaga. We asked Erykah Badu. We asked Céline Dion. We asked Jay-Z. We asked Dave Chappelle. (They’re) people who have been critical of him. That makes John Legend even more of a hero for me.”
Hampton also told Shadow and Act that they asked Mary J. Blige, and Lil Kim to participate as well.
“I asked Mary J. Blige, I asked Lil Kim…” Hampton told Shadow and Act. “I mean, most people just don’t want to touch it. I remember Ahmir [“Questlove” Thompson] was like, ‘I would do anything for you but I can’t do this.’ It’s not because they support him, it’s because it’s so messy and muddy. It’s that turning away that has allowed this to go on.”
After the first episode aired, Legend tweeted on Friday, “To everyone telling me how courageous I am for appearing in the doc, it didn’t feel risky at all. I believe these women and don’t give a f–k about protecting a serial child rapist. Easy decision.”