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Discovery Cancels Michael Jackson Autopsy Special After Outcry

Discovery has cancelled plans to air a reenactment of Michael Jackson's autopsy, after outcry from the late singer's estate and fans.

"Your decision to even schedule this program is in shockingly bad taste, insensitive to Michael's family and appears motivated solely by your blind desire to exploit Michael's death, while cynically attempting to dupe the public into believing this show will have serious medical value," John Branca and John McClain, co-executors of the estate, had written in a letter to the network.

"We were especially outraged when a sickening print advertisement for the program appeared making light of Michael's death by depicting a corpse sprawled on a steel gurney covered by a sheet with a hand sticking out wearing Michael's signature glove," they added on what they called an "offensive, exploitative program."

But Discovery citing an upcoming court hearing and concern by the late pop star's estate as the reasons for the cancellation.

"Given the commencement of legal proceedings beginning next week, and at the request of Michael Jackson's estate, the scheduled broadcast of the medical documentary related to Michael Jackson's official autopsy has been postponed indefinitely," it said in a statement.

Jackson's estate says they "are hopeful that this show will never run in any market in the future."

"While Discovery cited legal proceedings and our request as the reasons for its decision, none of this would have happened had it not been for the incredible passion displayed by countless Michael Jackson fans worldwide who knew they stood as one and that their voices could not be ignored."

More than 10,000 fans also signed an online petition asking the network not to air the program.

January 3, 2011 |

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