The director of a new Michael Jackson documentary is suing the King of Pop's estate executors amid a dispute over footage rights.

Craig Williams' Michael Jackson: The Last Photo Shoot features clips he shot of the late superstar at the Brooklyn Museum of Art in New York City for Ebony magazine in 2007.

His film also includes interviews with Jackson's friends, photographers and stylists as the superstar prepared for the photo session.

However, Howard Weitzman, attorney for the Michael Jackson estate, tells The Hollywood Reporter that the images of the King of Pop are private.

He says, "The makers of the documentary are attempting to exploit footage and photographs of Michael Jackson, which we believe are owned by his Estate. The documentary contains footage of Michael during private moments that he never agreed could be publicly and commercially exploited without his consent and/or involvement. Michael never authorised or approved the use of this material in the film."

Williams and producers at Noval Williams Films insist they have obtained the rights, and in a complaint filed in New York federal court, they claim the Jackson family was offered the opportunity to purchase the rights to the images in 2011, but passed.

Williams is seeking declaratory relief that his film isn't infringing copyrights.