Celebrity deaths tend to feel personal to us. One day they are there and the next day, they aren’t. Many of the celebrated and much-loved personalities have succumbed to untimely deaths marred by suspicion and conspiracy. AXS is known for its eye-opening and stimulating documentaries, especially those that highlight controversial stories from the entertainment world. The channel’s new offering is a docuseries that centers around untimely deaths of popular celebrities. ‘Final 24’ documents the events that transpired in the final 24 hours of a celebrity’s life. The series is characterized in the form of unique and compelling psychological detective stories that explore the death of the celebrity in focus.
Here’s all you need to know about the show.
‘Final 24’ premieres June 3, 2020, and every consecutive Wednesday henceforth, at 9/8 c exclusively on AXS TV.
The show chronicles the last days of 14 significant celebrities whose untimely deaths prompted dramatic investigations into the circumstances surrounding their deaths. The show delves into the lives of entertainers, artists and cultural personalities — starting from their childhood and culminating in their death. Featuring dramatizations as well as archival footage starring these iconic figures, ‘Final 24’ will address any psychological flaws, possible hidden secrets and other events that may have contributed to the particular celebrity’s death. In a nutshell, the viewer is presented with a raw account of why and how the celebrity died. The celebrities in focus are those whose deaths massively impacted the industry that they were a part of and whose passing came as an utter shock to the world. It also touches upon sensitive subjects such as suicide, murder and substance abuse, which are crucial to the cases. So, the docuseries is not a mere biography, but an attempt to uncover the mystery behind a famous death.
This season’s episode line-up is as follows.
Member of the British punk rock band ‘Sex Pistols’, Sid Vicious (real name: John Simon Ritchie) died of a heroin overdose on 2 February 1979 at age 21. However, shortly after his death, his mother originally claimed that his death was not accidental and that he had made a suicide pact with his girlfriend, Nancy Spungen, who had died four months prior. Later she is alleged to have revealed to journalist Alan G Parker that she had purposely administered a fatal dose of heroin to her son because she was worried he would go back to prison.
Nicole Brown Simpson
Nicole Brown Smith was a German-American model and the ex-wife of OJ Simpson. She and a friend were stabbed to death at her home in Los Angeles on June 12, 1994, two years after she divorced Simpson, who was arrested and charged with both murders. He was acquitted of the charges in 1997 but held liable in a civil suit.
Considered as one of the most influential rappers of all time, Tupac or 2Pac, as he was known on stage, was shot by an unknown assailant in a drive-by shooting in Las Vegas on September 7, 1996. He died six days later, but his killer was never caught. While many first suspected his friend-turned-rival The Notorious B.I.G, Biggie was himself killed in another drive-by shooting some months later.
Anna Nicole Smith
Anna Nicole Smith (real name: Vickie Lynn Hogan) was a model, actress and a television personality. She first gained recognition for winning the title of ‘1993 Playmate of the Year’ in Playboy Magazine. She died on February 8, 2007, after overdosing on prescription drugs only five months after the death of her son, Daniel Wayne Smith, who succumbed to a drug overdose.
James Douglas Morrison aka Jim Morrison was a singer, songwriter and poet who served as the lead vocalist of the rock band The Doors. Morrison was a raging alcoholic and his dependency, which developed during the 1960s, often affected his stage performances. He died unexpectedly on July 3, 1971, and was found in the bathtub of his Parisian apartment at the age of 27, which officially included him into the ’27 Club’, a list of popular musicians and actors who died aged 27. Various speculations have surrounded Morrison’s death as there was no autopsy performed, but the real cause of Morrison’s death remains unknown till date.
John Kennedy Jr
John Kennedy Jr, son of late US president, died on the evening of July 16, 1999, when the light aircraft he was piloting crashed into the Atlantic Ocean, off the coast of Massachusetts. His wife Carolyn Bessette and sister-in-law Lauren Bessette were also aboard the plane. His death is also attributed to the conspiracy of the Kennedy curse, an unfortunate trail of untimely deaths in the Kennedy family.
Gianni Versace was an Italian fashion designer who founded the fashion house ‘Versace’ and was among the first to link fashion with the music world. He was shot and killed outside his Miami Beach mansion at the age of 50, on July 15, 1997, by Andrew Cunanan, a serial killer.
Janis Lyn Joplin, one of the most influential artists of her era, was famously known for her rock, soul and blues music. She was found dead in her hotel room on October 4, 1970, after an accidental heroin overdose at age 27, making her another inclusion in the ’27 Club’.
Hunter S Thompson
An American journalist and author, Hunter S Thompson was known for spearheading the gonzo movement. He was known for his lifelong alcoholism and narcotics use and his love for firearms. On February 20, 2005, Thompson committed suicide by gunshot at the age of 67, following a series of health problems.
River Jude Phoenix was an actor, musician and animal activist who rose to fame in the late 1980s with his ‘teen idol’ status. River died on October 31, 1993, due to combined drug intoxication. He collapsed on a sidewalk outside a West Hollywood nightclub, which was partly-owned by his friend Johnny Depp. He was 23.
John Belushi was an actor, comedian and singer and famously among the seven original cast members of NBC’s ‘Saturday Night Live’. In his personal life, he had struggled with heavy use of drugs that jeopardized his career as a comedian. On March 5, 1982, Belushi died from combined drug intoxication (a mix of heroin and cocaine).
Marvin Gaye was a musical icon who helped shape the sound of ‘Motown’ in the 1960s. Gaye was fatally shot by his father, Marvin Gaye Sr, at their house in Los Angeles on April 1, 1984, just a day before his 45th birthday. He had been trying to break up a fight between his parents and got caught in the altercation.
David Koresh (real name Vernon Wayne Howell) was a musician and a cult leader who led the religious sect of the Branch Davidians. He played a central role in Waco siege which ended on April 19, 1993, and Koresh was killed with a gunshot to the head. To this day, no one knows if someone had killed him or it was a suicide gunshot.
Keith John Moon was an English drummer and member of the rock band, ‘The Who’. He is often cited for his unique style and his eccentric and self-destructive behavior. On September 7, 1978, Moon was found dead in his home from an overdose of Heminrevin, a drug he was taking to prevent or treat symptoms of alcohol withdrawal as he was battling his addiction.
You can watch the trailer released by AXS TV here.
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