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'Saved by the Bell' star Dustin Diamond begins chemotherapy for stage 4 lung cancer

Diamond, who played lovable nerd Screech on the hit sitcom, is scheduling his next round of chemotherapy and he will soon begin physical therapy, his representative said.
Image: Dustin Diamond
Dustin Diamond at Universal Studios Hollywood on May 16, 2016.Noel Vasquez / Getty Images file

Dustin Diamond, known best for his portrayal of the endearingly nerdy Screech on “Saved by the Bell,” has completed his first round of chemotherapy for his stage 4 lung cancer, a representative for the actor said Thursday.

Diamond's manager revealed the 44-year-old's cancer diagnosis last week, but said the former child star was awaiting test results to learn the exact location and nature of the cancer.

On Thursday, Diamond's representative, Roger Paul, told NBC News that he is battling stage 4 small cell carcinoma.

Diamond's next round of chemotherapy is being scheduled, and he will soon begin physical therapy, Paul said.

"Dustin is looking forward to spending more time with his girlfriend, playing his bass guitar/video games, as well as making videos for his fans on social media," Paul said in a statement.

Diamond has been receiving fan mail, Paul added, providing an Illinois address for a car insurance office for additional fans who want to express support.

Diamond came to fame in the 1990s with his role of Samuel "Screech" Powers on “Saved by the Bell." He played the role of best friend and sidekick to the show’s decidedly non-geeky main character, Zack Morris.

Though most of the show’s original cast returned to a reboot of the sitcom on the Peacock streaming platform, Diamond did not reprise his role. Peacock is owned by NBCUniversal, the parent company of NBC News.

Diamond wrote the 2009 book, "Behind the Bell," which portrayed the cast in a less-than-flattering light.

He also made some enemies while appearing on the reality show "Celebrity Fit Club" in which he assumed the role of the villain.

In 2001, Diamond filed for bankruptcy.

He was also arrested and convicted for his role in a fight at a Wisconsin bar in 2014, in which Diamond stabbed another bar patron in the armpit with a switchblade. He was placed in a work release program after beginning his four-month sentence and was released a month early for good behavior.