Saved By The Bell star Dustin Diamond has lost his battle with cancer in a sad turn of events. He was only 44.
Just three weeks ago, Deadline reported that Dustin Diamond was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer after checking himself into a Florida hospital after experiencing pain throughout his body due to shingles and “general unease.” Variety broke the sad news the actor died due to carcinoma Monday (Feb.1) morning.
The actor’s agent, Roger Paul, confirmed his passing in a statement revealing he didn’t suffer or experienced any pain.
“In that time, it managed to spread rapidly throughout his system; the only mercy it exhibited was its sharp and swift execution. Dustin did not suffer. He did not have to lie submerged in pain. For that, we are grateful.”
The world grew up with Diamond’s character Screech Powers in the iconic NBC teen sitcom Saved By The Bell. Diamond first played Screech in Good Morning, Miss Bliss, which took place at an Indiana middle school, before it was canceled after 14 episodes. NBC eventually decided to retool the show and rebrand it as Saved By The Bell and moved some of the cast to Bayside High School in Pacific Palisades, California, without any explanation. Diamond would star in the show until 1992.
Even after Screech graduated from high school, Diamond would reprise the role of screech in spinoffs, including Saved by the Bell: The College Years and Saved by the Bell: The New Class, which he starred in for six years.
Subsequently, he would land small roles in television shows and films like Made, Dickie Roberts: Former Child Star, Four Corners Road, American Pie Presents: The Book of Love, and his very forgettable sex tape Screeched – Saved by the Smell, which he revealed to Oprah Winfrey during an episode of her Oprah: Where Are They Now? TV special in 2013, he regretted making it and pointing out he was a low point in his life and only did it for the cash.
His stints on reality tv shows like the fifth season of Celebrity Fit Club, The Weakest Link, and Celebrity Boxing 2 were also memorable. He also penned the infamous memoir, Behind the Bell, which spoke about the alleged shenanigans behind the scenes of Saved By The Bell with the cast, including himself. The book even spawned a Lifetime Movie.
Diamond’s life spiraled out of control a bit. He was arrested in 2014 and served three months in prison in 2015 for stabbing a man during a bar altercation. He was arrested again in May 2016 for violating the terms of his probation. His agent made sure to address those issues in the statement:
“We are aware that Dustin is not considered reputable by most. He’s had a history of mishaps, of unfortunate events. We want the public to understand that he was not intentionally malevolent. He — much like the rest of those who act out and behave poorly — had undergone a great deal of turmoil and heartache. His actions, though rebukeable, stemmed from loss and the lack of knowledge on how to process that pain properly. In actuality, Dustin was a humorous and high-spirited individual whose greatest passion was to make others laugh. He was able to sense and feel other peoples’ emotions to such a length that he was able to feel them too—a strength and a flaw, all in one.”
Despite his tell-all book, his former Saved By The Bell castmates did pay tribute to the late actor.
Twitter is also paying homage to Diamond and giving him his flowers for playing the lovable geek. You can peep those reactions in the gallery below.
Photo: NBC / Getty
Put some respect on Screech’s name.
We feel the same way.
A classic moment.
Yeah looking back, that was a wild TV moment.
He damn sure did.
Too soon. F*ck cancer.
Get into the fits.