He lost a Pepsi endorsement as well as a deal to develop several films. The Jackson-themed Captain EO attraction at Disneyland was scrapped.
Jackson acknowledged in the interview with Bashir that, despite the earlier cases, he still invited children to share his bedroom and saw nothing wrong with it.
"It's not sexual," he insisted. "I tuck them in, have hot milk, give them cookies. It's very charming, it's very sweet."
He added that his own children "sleep with other people all the time."
By then, Jackson was a figure of pop music's past, not its present. When The Times, in 2001, asked top recording executives to name the most valuable acts in the business, Jackson failed to make the top 20.
In 2003, he settled a lawsuit by his former financial advisors after legal documents portrayed the singer as near bankruptcy.
At the same time, he was waging legal battles against his 1970s recording label, Motown Records, and his current label, Sony's Epic Records. He stirred speculation about his mental state when he contended that the latter company, and in particular Mottola, had inadequately promoted his work because of racism.
He celebrated his 45th birthday in August 2003 at a curious public event that seemed to underscore the decline of his career. Hundreds of fans paid $30 each or more for admission to an old downtown Los Angeles movie palace, where largely amateur or obscure performers sang, lip-synced or danced to the fallen idol's hits. Most of the seats reserved for A-list guests went begging.
When the honoree took the stage at the end to join in a rendition of "We Are the World," he was flanked not by the likes of Bob Dylan and Stevie Wonder, as he was when the famous song was first recorded, but by several Jackson impersonators.
Such impersonators usually model themselves on his "Thriller" persona, but the singer himself looked nothing like that in recent years.
There was intense public curiosity about his physical metamorphosis. Jackson often insisted that his wan complexion was the result of treatment for a skin disorder called vitiligo, but that did not explain why his once-broad nose became long, sleek and pertly tipped.
He publicly admitted to two nose operations, but cosmetic surgeons who studied his photographs surmised that he had undergone far more, possibly so many that he had destroyed the cartilage.
In 1996, Jackson married his former nurse, Debbie Rowe, who bore two of his three children, Prince Michael Jr. and Paris Michael Katherine. He did not disclose the identity of the mother of his third child, Prince Michael II.
He raised the children without their mothers and had them wear elaborate masks whenever they went out with him. Several months after Prince Michael II's birth, Jackson dangled the baby outside an upper-story hotel window in Berlin to show the child to fans assembled below. The incident led to accusations that the singer was an unfit father. He later acknowledged that he had shown poor judgment.
He is survived by his children; his parents; and siblings Maureen, Jackie, Tito, Jermaine, Marlon, Randy, LaToya and Janet.
Times staff writer Chris Lee contributed to this report.