UPDATE (1/14/2021, 8:52 PM ET): Dustin Diamond‘s team confirmed that the Saved by the Bell star has been diagnosed with stage four cancer in this Facebook announcement.
ORIGINAL: Saved By The Bell star Dustin Diamond was hospitalized in Florida over the weekend of January 9, his rep confirms to HollywoodLife. The actor, 44, had reportedly suffered from pain “all over his body and a general sense of unease” and was taken to the hospital for testing, according to TMZ. “Concerning the story, it is true and at this point they are doing more tests to determine” [Dustin’s condition],” his rep told us in a statement.
Dustin’s team is reportedly concerned that he could have cancer, according to TMZ. The outlet also claimed that one of the tests Dustin is receiving at the hospital is a biopsy. His rep did not elaborate on these claims. Dustin is best known for playing Screech on four seasons of Saved By The Bell, Saved by the Bell: The College Years, and Saved By The Bell: The New Class. His last role was the 2020 short Catching Up.
Dustin was the only original member of the main Saved By The Bell cast not to return for the show’s 2020 reboot on Peacock. However, Elizabeth Berkley, who revives her Jessica Spano character in the series, said the door was open for him to join in the future. “We’ll see if there’s another season, maybe it’s something to explore,” she said on a November episode of Watch What Happens Live, stressing that there’s no bad blood between Dustin and the cast.
He sung a different tune over the years, though. his 2009 tell-all, Behind The Bell, painted an unflattering portrait of some of his Saved By The Bell co-stars. He claimed in a 2016 Extra interview — with none other than his former co-star Mario Lopez — that it was the work of a “ghostwriter out of control” and that some of the book was allegedly fabricated.
“I wanted to write a book about my life. I was supposed to talk to a ghostwriter for 40 hours total. I talked to a guy for 90 minutes total… another two weeks go by, and I get something in the mail, I get a copy of the book.They fabricated a whole bunch of stuff,” he claimed. “Imagine how I feel, I haven’t talked to Mark-Paul [Gosselaar] or Elizabeth [Berkley] or Tiffani [Thiessen] in ages, so I can’t imagine what they think, and I’m hoping this will clear it up. It wasn’t me, I didn’t write this. I was just as shocked and appalled.”
This story is still developing. HollywoodLife will keep you updated as more information about Dustin Diamond becomes available.