Documentary on R Kelly's history of sexual misconduct provokes calls for boycott
The Lifetime documentary Surviving R Kelly includes testimony from women who were privy to the singer's alleged acts, prompting the hashtag #MuteRKelly to trend on Twitter.
The sexual conduct of chart-topping R&B singer Robert Kelly, better known as R Kelly, has been uncovered in detail in a six-part documentary on the Lifetime channel, creating uproar among viewers.
Kelly has been embroiled in cases involving accusations of sexual misconduct towards underage women for more than 20 years, but this is the first time an in-depth documentary has been produced.
It includes testimony from several women of varying ages who were privy to Kelly’s alleged acts.
Two episodes centre on his 2008 sex tape and child pornography trial, while later episodes include stories of parents trying to extricate their daughters from within his circle.
The show has unveiled such incidences as underage threesomes, psychological abuse, and attempts to pay witnesses off.
In the show, singer John Legend speaks out against Kelly’s acts, while Chance The Rapper has offered a public apology for having worked with Kelly, calling the collaboration a “mistake”.
Legend tweeted on Jan 3, "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*** about protecting a serial child rapist. Easy decision."
Twitter users have taken up a #MuteRKelly hashtag, encouraging people to stop listening to his music.
“We wanted irrefutable evidence,” executive producer Dream Hampton told Entertainment Weekly. “Without leading any of these women, they all had the exact same stories, even if their interactions with R Kelly were 15 years apart."
"All of them have stories about being physically abused, being videotaped without consent, being denied food or bathroom privileges as a punishment. All of them have stories about rules that were established early on.”