Saved By The Bell Removes Controversial Scenes About Selena Gomez’s Kidney Transplant

The Saved By The Bell reboot has deleted scenes referencing Selena Gomez’s kidney transplant after fans were outraged over insensitive comments.

By Lindsay Weinberg Dec 01, 2020 2:33 AMTags
Watch: "Saved by the Bell" Apologizes for Selena Gomez Kidney Remark

Saved By The Bell is making amends. The creative team has removed contentious scenes about Selena Gomez's 2017 kidney transplant following fan backlash.

The new reboot was criticized this week for nonchalantly referencing Gomez's procedure. E! News has learned that there is now an edited version streaming on NBCU's Peacock streaming site. 

In the sixth episode, called "Teen-Line," two supporting characters debated who donated the kidney to Gomez. "I know for a fact that Selena Gomez's kidney donor was Justin Bieber's mom," one said. The other replied, "It was Demi Lovato's kidney. They're best friends... like you and I were."

"Respect Selena Gomez" trended on Twitter over the weekend, when Selenators defended her against the "tone deaf" comments.

In actuality, her donor was actress Francia Raisa, who also spoke out about the Saved By The Bell references on her Instagram Story. "Some of the cast and producers have reached out to me personally to apologize for this and I truly appreciate that," the Grown-ish star wrote. "But I do want to acknowledge that this public apology from the network should acknowledge the donors that could have been offended by this."

Selena Gomez's Most Candid Quotes

Peacock, UTV and executive producers apologized for the episode the day before. In a statement obtained by E! News, they wrote, "We apologize. It was never our intention to make light of Selena's health... We have been in touch with her team and will be making a donation to her charity, The Selena Gomez Fund for Lupus Research at USC."


Raisa has previously explained the seriousness of the transplant and described the challenges the "Look At Her Now" singer faced after the surgery in 2017. She revealed Gomez "could have died" from complications. 

After three years of recovery, Gomez now proudly shows off her scars, as she told fans on Instagram in September, "I feel confident in who I am and what I went through...and I'm proud of that."

The Saved By The Bell reboot debuted on Nov. 25. Here's everything we know about the series.

(E! and Peacock are both part of the NBCUniversal family.)

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