Dustin Diamond, who was best known for playing Samuel “Screech” Powers in Saved By The Bell and its various spinoffs and continuations, has died at 44 following a battle with Carcinoma, a form of lung cancer.
Diamond’s team announced the news of his death on his official Facebook page:
Diamond first played Screech in the sitcom Good Morning, Miss Bliss, which only aired for one season in 1988-1989 before being re-tooled into Saved By The Bell. Diamond was able to transition the character into the new show, which he appeared on for 86 episodes before also appearing in spinoff series Saved By The Bell: The College Years and Saved By The Bell: The New Class.
Diamond had difficulty after Saved By The Bell ended, finding himself typecast due to his popular role. “I didn’t know what to do [when the show ended],” he said in 2013. “It was hard to get work that wasn’t Screech-clone stuff.”
He also released a tell-all book called Behind The Bell in 2009, which painted his experience and his castmates in an unsavory manner; this likely caused friction between himself and his former co-stars, as he was not invited to participate in a number of recent cast reunions or the show’s reboot on Peacock. He also later said that the book was ghostwritten, and many of the stories were untrue.
In 2016, Diamond did an interview with Saved By The Bell co-star Mario Lopez on Extra, hoping to put the past to bed.
You can read Team Dustin’s complete Facebook post below:
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