Discovery Cancels Michael Jackson Autopsy Special

Michael Jackson - 2000
Dave Hogan/Hulton Archive/Getty Images

The network releases a statement 'indefinitely' postponing the controversial broadcast which 9,000 fans signed a petition against.

Following uproar against a planned upcoming TV special re-enacting the autopsy of Michael Jackson, Discovery Communications released a statement announcing the cancellation of the broadcast.
“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,” a statement from the network read.

There was no further comment on the matter. The program was set to air on Jan.13 in the United Kingdom.
 After news of the special came out, the singer’s estate fired an angry letter to Discovery and more than 9,000 fans promptly signed an online petition asking the network not to air it.
John Branca and John McClain, who are co-executors of the estate, sent a letter to network president and CEO David Zaslav on Wednesday.
"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," they wrote in a letter posted online.
"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, calling the ad "debased, sick and insensitive."