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REELZ is behind their recent documentary exploring the last hours of Eddie Van Halen’s life.
Van Halen’s episode of “Autopsy: The Last Hours of…” was criticized by his son Wolfgang Van Halen and ex-wife Valerie Bertinelli.
“F— @ReelzChannel, f— everyone who works on this show, and f— you if you watch it. It’s disgusting to try to glorify someone’s death from cancer . Pathetic and heartless,” Wolfgang wrote on Twitter.
“Damn, that’s disgusting,” Bertinelli replied, using her Twitter handle @Wolfiesmom.
EDDIE VAN HALEN’S EX VALERIE BERTINELLI SHARES HEARTING WORDS SHE SAYED TO MUSICIAN BEFORE HIS DEATH
The show’s description, which will premiere on June 5, reads: “If caught early, Eddie’s disease has had reasonable survival rates, so what exactly happened From now on, renowned medical examiner Dr. Michael Hunter will analyze every detail of her life in order to piece together what else may have happened to her body, ultimately leading to her untimely death.”
REELZ, in a statement following criticism from Bertinelli and Wolfgang, claimed the documentary episode “responsibly” explored the “circumstances” around Van Halen’s death.
“‘Autopsy: The Last Hours of…’ responsibly explores the circumstances of the deaths of well-known and sincerely loved celebrities about whom the public cares deeply,” the statement read.
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The statement continued, “The REELZ series generates a lot of feedback from our viewers, ranging from medical professionals praising its scientific accuracy, fans telling us it’s shutting down, or that they’ve become more proactive for the benefit of their health, and many who gain insight into health issues that otherwise would not receive attention, such as Karen Carpenter, who brought anorexia into the public consciousness, Prince, whose death brought attention to the opioid epidemic, and Luke Perry, whose passing has renewed attention to strokes that affect people of all ages.”
Van Halen died aged 65 in 2020. The guitarist lost his battle with throat cancer.
Van Halen was a guitar virtuoso, whose blinding speed, control and innovation propelled his band, Van Halen, into one of hard rock’s greatest bandsfueled the unmistakable spirited solo of Michael Jackson’s hit “Beat It” and elevated him to rock god status.
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With his distinct solos, Van Halen drove the ultimate California party band and helped knock disco off the charts beginning in the late 1970s with his band’s self-titled debut album and later hit record “1984”, which contains the classics. “Jump”, “Panama” and “Hot for Teacher”.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.