Entertainment

Mario Lopez Will Be Playing a Sexy Colonel Sanders In An Upcoming Lifetime ‘Mini-Movie’

Screenshot via YouTube

Lifetime may be known for its soapy melodramas and corny true crime thrillers, but it looks like the network is now expanding into previously uncharted territory.

On Monday, the network announced that it would be premiering a “mini-movie” on December 13th starring Mario Lopez. Nothing unusually there, right? Wrong. The catch is: Mario Lopez will be playing a sexy, Latino version of Colonel Sanders. Yes, as in the founder and spokesperson of KFC.

The Lifetime movie is called “A Recipe for Seduction” and will be presented in partnership with KFC.

Yes, this is real life. No, this not a drill.

According to the Lifetime website, the movie’s “plot” will go as follows: “As the holidays near, an heiress (played by Bosch alum Justene Alpert) contends with the affections of a suitor handpicked by her mother. When the handsome chef (Mario Lopez) arrives with his secret recipe and a dream, he sets in motion a series of events that unravel the mother’s plans.”

Sounds juicy (pun intended).

Oddly enough, this won’t be the first time that KFC has enlisted an unexpected person to play the illustrious Colonel Sanders.

The fast-food chain has a long-running gimmick of casting celebrities to play the coveted role of Colonel Sanders in advertisements and promotions. They have previously enlisted stars like Rob Lowe, Jim Gaffigan, and even Reba McEntire.

According to their respective press releases, both Lifetime and KFC seem pumped by this opportunity.

“Why not fill some of your time at home with a suspenseful drama and the comfort of our world-famous fried chicken? ‘A Recipe for Seduction’ is a perfect excuse to curl up at home and escape to your own happily ever after,” said KFC chief marketing officer Andrea Zahumensky.

Lifetime was similarly effusive. “Through a terrific cast, and with a wink to the unique sensibilities celebrated in Lifetime movies, this co-production spotlights each brand’s POV and marries them in a fun and authentic way,” (….whatever that means) said A+E Network’s EVP of Sales.

Naturally, the internet was equally intrigued and perplexed by this bizarre project.

The Twitterverse was abuzz with hot takes.

This person couldn’t tell if Lifetime was making fun of itself, or if we are making fun of Lifetime…

It’s official. We’ve moved into a post-satire era. Reality is now stranger than fiction.

This person chalked up this news to: 2020 gonna 2020.

Honestly, nothing can surprise us at this point.

This person was wondering if Lifetime had blackmail on Mario Lopez.

The most likely answer: a lot of money. Like, a yacht’s worth of money.

“A Recipe for Seduction” will air on Lifetime this Sunday, December 13th at noon EST. Get the popcorn ready! Or should we say…popcorn chicken?

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Dustin Diamond aka ‘Screech’ from ‘Saved By the Bell’ Dies at 44; Mario Lopez and Former Cast Members Grieve

Entertainment

Dustin Diamond aka ‘Screech’ from ‘Saved By the Bell’ Dies at 44; Mario Lopez and Former Cast Members Grieve

Photo via elizberkley/Instagram

Today, former “Saved By the Bell” cast members are grieving the lost of someone who once was an integral member of their team.

On Monday, Dustin Diamond, well known for playing the loveable, zany character Screech on “Saved by the Bell” passed away from carcinoma at the age of 44.

Mario Lopez, Mark-Paul Gosselaar, Tiffani Thiessen, and Elizabeth Berkley all publicly eulogized Dustin Diamond on social media.

It was just a few weeks ago that Diamond’s diagnosis was revealed to the public. His rep released the following statement:

“We are saddened to confirm of Dustin Diamond’s passing on Monday, February 1st, 2021 due to carcinoma. He was diagnosed with this brutal, relentless form of malignant cancer only three weeks ago. In that time, it managed to spread rapidly throughout his system;

His rep went on to say that Diamond’s death was quick and that he “did not suffer”.

As soon as the news of his death was announced, Diamond’s former “Saved By the Bell” co-star, Mario Lopez, took to Twitter to pay his condolences to Diamond’s family.

Lopez posted a picture of himself beside Diamond, along with the heartfelt note: “Dustin, you will be missed my man. The fragility of this life is something never to be taken for granted. Prayers for your family will continue on…”

Later, Lopez spoke with Variety about how he was still struggling to “process” Diamond’s death.

“I actually just spoke with him a couple of weeks ago. He was reluctant to go in [to the hospital] for a while because he didn’t know if anything was going to get out,” Lopez revealed. “And I said, ‘Bro, that’s foolish, you’ve got to get in there and take care of yourself and forget what people are saying.’ Some people thought his illness was a joke, which is awful, but the internet always spills tales.

Lopez also revealed that he himself was sure that Diamond was going to pull through. “When all of this was happening, I was optimistic that he would make a recovery, but it was obviously too late,” he said.

Dustin Diamond and Mario Lopez may have had a somewhat complicated relationship, but they remained in touch years after the show ended.

In Mario Lopez’s 2014 book “Just Between Us,” he confirmed the long-standing rumors that Diamond wasn’t exactly beloved by the rest of the cast. “Not everyone got along with Screech AKA Dustin Diamond. I did, but maybe I was the exception,” he wrote.

“From when I found out he was sick to his passing, it’s been incredibly quick. It’s so fresh, it’s incredibly hard to process,” he revealed. “And it’s shocking because he was so young; he was only 44. I honestly thought, ‘There’s no way [he won’t make it]. It sucks, but he’ll bounce back.’”

And indeed, controversy followed Diamond long after he graduated from Bay City High.

Diamond consistently made headlines due to everything from reality show fights, to sex tapes, to bar-room brawls.

In 2016, Diamond sat down for an interview with Mario Lopez on Extra, explaining that he wanted to start a new chapter in his life.

“I want to put the tom foolery and malarkey behind me, you know? It’s time for that clean slate. Time for the change.”

Diamond’s rep is asking that his family is given the time and privacy necessary to grieve their loss.

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Mario Lopez Publicly Supports Former Co-Star Dustin Diamond aka ‘Screech’ After ‘Heartbreaking’ Stage 4 Cancer Diagnosis

Entertainment

Mario Lopez Publicly Supports Former Co-Star Dustin Diamond aka ‘Screech’ After ‘Heartbreaking’ Stage 4 Cancer Diagnosis

Photo via mariolopezviva/Twitter

Mario Lopez is living proof that true old friends stick by your side–no matter what. The “Access Hollywood” co-host took to Twitter recently to voice his support of his friend and former “Saved By the Bell” co-star, Dustin Diamond after the tragic revelation of Diamond’s stage four cancer diagnosis.

“I connected with Dustin earlier this evening and although the news of his diagnosis is heartbreaking, we remain positive that he’ll overcome this,” wrote Lopez. “Praying for him & his family and for a speedy recovery.
God Bless”.

On Thursday, Dustin Diamond aka “Screech” was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer after he was admitted to the hospital for intense pain.

In addition to feeling pain all over his body, Diamond also allegedly discovered a “huge lump” on his throat. Although his representatives describe his condition as serious, he is reportedly undergoing chemotherapy and his friends and loved ones are hopeful for his recovery.

“We can confirm that Dustin does have cancer,” a representative for Diamond revealed to People. “It’s very serious, though we are still waiting for more details, which we will have shortly. He’s in a lot of pain.”

To Entertainment Weekly, his reps said: “By next week, we’ll have a much better understanding of the severity of his condition and what treatments he will need so that he’s comfortable.” They also added that Diamond was “fading in and out” when he was first admitted to the hospital.

Dustin Diamond and Mario Lopez have long had a complicated relationship.

In Mario Lopez’s 2014 book “Just Between Us,” he revealed that Diamond wasn’t exactly beloved by the rest of the cast. “Not everyone got along with Screech AKA Dustin Diamond. I did, but maybe I was the exception,” he wrote. “He was one of those dorky kids who thought it was hilarious to take Polaroids of his genitals and leave the photos all over the set.”

In Dustin Diamond’s 2009 tell-all book “Behind the Bell”, he painted a picture of negative experience on set. The youngest of the cast, Diamond often felt ostracized by the “in crowd” Bay City High’s hotter, older cast members.

After “Saved By the Bell” stopped filming, Dustin Diamond had a hard time getting back on his feet.

Diamond seemed to be embroiled in endless controversy, from reality show fights, to sex tapes, to bar-room brawls. In 2015, he was sentenced to four months in jail after stabbing a man during a bar fight.

He sat down for an interview with Mario Lopez for Extra in 2016 to set the record straight about his alleged bad body behavior. At that point, Diamond told Lopez that he had started a new chapter in his life.

“I want to put the tom foolery and malarkey behind me, you know? It’s time for that clean slate. Time for the change.”

Well, we hope Diamond gets better so he can fulfill his dreams of having a new lease on life. We’re glad his old friends are standing by him.

Notice any needed corrections? Please email us at corrections@wearemitu.com