According to a 2009 tell-all book called Behind the Bell by Dustin Diamond (Screech), there was a much darker side to Saved by the Bell behind the scenes. Since that book has been published and turned into a Lifetime movie called The Unauthorized Saved by the Bell Story, it has been revealed that Diamond’s tell-all was far from the truth. In fact, the actor has admitted that he did not even write most of the book himself. But what if some of those insane fake stories about what happened behind the scenes of Saved By the Bell actually had some truth?
For 4 Seasons, from 1989 to 1992, Saved by the Bell aired on Saturday mornings on NBC. However, the squeaky clean show aimed at tweens probably had more behind-the-scenes drama than executive producer Peter Engel dared to air on actual television. While everything looked perfect for Bayside High teens in the Saved by the Bell episodes, the show may have been a nightmare to make.
So, what is fact and what is fiction? Compiled here are some stories that allegedly describe what really happened behind the scenes of Saved By the Bell. While some of these tales are too ridiculous to be true, like Diamond's claim to have slept with 2,000 women, many tales have been corroborated. For example, the cast really did get around. Check out the Saved By the Bell stories for yourself to see if you can discern the grains of truth sprinkled throughout the insane tales.
According to Dustin Diamond's tell-all, behind the scenes book, Behind the Bell, Mario Lopez date-raped a woman and NBC paid her to keep quiet. Diamond wrote that Lopez "lured [a woman] back to his pad... and [she] was forced to have sex against her will." While many will be quick to excuse this as one of Diamond's lies, there is actually some corroboration for this claim in a Variety article from 1993.
In the piece, police said that they were investigating a teenager's claim that she was raped by Lopez while at his house. However, the prosecutors dropped the charges, saying there was not enough evidence. Diamond claimed in his book that NBC lawyers got involved and paid the young lady around $50,000 to keep quiet.
Tiffani-Amber Thiessen probably took the biggest beating in Diamond's book. The actor writes that when Thiessen's boyfriend, Eddie Garcia, guest-starred on the show as movie star Johnny Dakota (during the infamous anti-drug episode, "No Hope with Dope"), the actress was simultaneously hooking up with both Mario Lopez and Mark-Paul Gosselaar.
She would allegedly go from one dressing room to another dressing room, right under Garcia's nose. He eventually caught her cheating and supposedly broke up with Thiessen after the show wrapped that same week.
In his tell-all book, Diamond does not just call out his fellow Saved by the Bell actors. He actually admits to some pretty poor behavior himself. He writes a story detailing how an extra belittled him in front of his co-stars. Obviously, this was humiliating for Diamond. So, an infuriated Diamond decided to piss in her purse and write all about it in his book.
Even though Screech was hardly a sexy character and Dustin Diamond was far from typically handsome, fame allegedly brought the attractiveness out in Diamond. The actor contends in his book that he slept with 2,000 women. He writes that he would go to Disneyland and simply walk around until girls recognized him.
"People don't realize that Disneyland in the early '90s was the perfect place to meet and hook up with chicks," Diamond writes. He tells of how he would take girls on "The Haunted Mansion" ride because it was nine minutes long and totally dark. Of course, like many of the claims in Diamond's book, his sexcapades cannot be verified. However, fame and being on TV certainly makes your average Joe much more appealing.