Sperm donor discredits Netflix documentary
(Credits: Netflix)

Film News

Sperm donor discredits Netflix documentary

A sperm donor from the Netherlands who has fathered several hundred children through his donations has discredited a new Netflix documentary about him. The Man With 1,000 Kids focuses on the women who have used the sperm of Jonathan Jacob Meijer to have children.

According to the film, one woman felt “sad and angry” when she discovered just how many children Meijer had contributed to the birth of. However, Meijer is adamant that there is a level of deception present in the Netflix doc due to the way it focuses on those who are unhappy with his mass fatherhood and not those who are happy about being able to have children because of his donations.

Speaking with BBC Radio 4’s Woman’s Hour, Meijer noted, “They deliberately called [the documentary] The Man With 1,000 Kids, when it should be ‘the sperm donor who helped families conceive with 550 children.’ So already from the start, they are deliberately deceiving and misleading.”

Meijer went on to argue that Netflix did a “great job” of choosing a handful of “unhappy” families from the over 200 families that he has “helped”, the likes of which would have told the streaming service producers “something else”.

Netflix originally did not want to comment on Meijer’s disappointment with the documentary, but the documentary’s producer, Natalie Hill, ended up offering her opinion, telling Women’s Hour, “I’ve spent the last four years speaking to families who have been impacted by Jonathan’s lies. I’ve personally spoken to 45 or 50 families.”

“Fifty families made impact statements to the court about his lies and pleaded with the judge that he stop,” Hill added. “So this continued platform for Jonathan to talk about it being a handful of women is completely untrue.”

Across 17 years, Meijer made sperm donations, although he also made a series of private donations too, although it ought to be clear that this means he had dealings with the families directly, rather than going through a private clinic or consultant.

Meijer believes that having an estimated 550 children might be considered a lot for a “normal man” but thinks that for a sperm donor, it’s more than achievable. “It’s quite common. They go up into the hundreds of children,” he said. “They [the clinics] will ship the donor semen to multiple countries.”

The Man With 1,000 Kids began streaming on Netflix on Wednesday (July 3rd) and has quickly become one of the most talked-about docs on the service, even if its subject thinks it is unreliable.