The Discovery network announced on Friday that plans to air a reenactment of Michael Jackson's autopsy have been canceled. The show, titled "Michael Jackson's Autopsy: What Really Killed Michael Jackson," was nixed because of an upcoming court hearing and concern by Jackson's estate, according to Reuters.
The program was set to air in several countries in Europe on January 13. According to the wire service, the network released a statement which explained their decision. "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," the statement said.
The show was an unofficial and fictional account of what the autopsy must have been like. It was not set to air in the United States.
The co-executors of Jackson's estate, John Branca and John McClain, condemned the show in an open letter, according to Reuters. The statement said the show was, "in shockingly bad taste."
After the network announced the show had been nixed, Branca and McClain released another statement which said, "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."
The King of Pop died on June 25, 2009. Authorities blamed propofol for the death of the 50-year-old Jackson. His physician at the time of death, Dr. Conrad Murray, has pleaded not guilty to his charge of involuntary manslaughter. A preliminary hearing will be held on Tuesday to determine if there is sufficient evidence for the trial to go forward.
Michael Jackson's father, Joseph Jackson, refiled a wrongful death lawsuit on November 30 in California state court against Dr. Conrad Murray, reports The Associated Press. The lawsuit accuses Dr. Murray of negligence in administering propofol to Michael Jackson. In addition, it also names Applied Pharmacy Services in Las Vegas.