jackson jesse 300x214 The Missing Jackson at Michaels Memorial: JesseA lot of familiar faces from the world of Michael Jackson were missing yesterday at the memorial service: Liz, Liza, Macaulay, etc.

But the biggest absence: Reverend Jesse Jackson. He was nowhere to be seen and did not speak. It was a glaring omission. Jackson raced to Michael’s side in Santa Maria, California during his 2005 child molestation trial. He frequently spoke out for Michael. In December 2006 he went with Michael to James Brown’s funeral.

So what happened? Sources say that Jesse Jackson and Joseph Jackson, Michael’s father, do not get along. Much debate went on for days backstage to get the Reverend on the show. Considering that Al Sharpton and the children of Dr. Martin Luther King got their chances at the podium — and all spoke magnificently — the Jesse Jackson situation is considered the biggest backstage scandal of the memorial.

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Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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