Dustin Diamond is ready to set the record straight on his much-maligned post-"Saved By The Bell" life and move on.
In his first interview since being released from jail for stabbing a man, Dustin recounted that day, his book and his infamous sex tape that he wasn't even in. The interview was also a "Bell" reunion of sorts, as he did with with "Extra" host Mario Lopez, who famously played A.C. Slater on the show.
In the interview, the man who infamously played Screech recalled that Christmas day that landed him in a Wisconsin jail for just under three months.
Dustin tells Mario he and fiancée Amanda Schutz were out celebrating at an area bar when a group of people confronted them asking for photos. Things quickly got out of hand and Amanda got sucker punched in the melee, he said.
"She leaned back to me and her face was covered in blood," he said, adding that a man grabbed Amanda by the hair.
"I opened my pocket knife and said, 'Let my wife go immediately,' which worked," he said. "I had my pocket knife like this... and the blade was right here and the guy came from around me and grabbed my throat, and so he nicked his arm on the tip of it -- it was a Band-Aid, the most expensive Band-Aid I've ever bought."
He was sentenced to jail for the skirmish.
"It's pretty daunting," he said of jail. "It's pretty scary going into that environment. I found that as long as you follow the rules and stay with the system, it works. You can get in and out unscathed."
Dustin certainly regrets the incident, but doesn't regret protecting his girl. One of his biggest regrets, he said, is his book, "Behind the Bell." But, he said he didn't even write it, saying a ghostwriter fictionalized most of it.
"I wanted to write a book about my life… I was supposed to talk to a ghostwriter for 40 hours total. I talked to a guy for 90 minutes total… another two weeks go by, and I get something in the mail, I get a copy of the book," he said. "They fabricated a whole bunch of stuff… I kind of [was] super railroaded on that."
Mario said, "The book didn't exactly paint a flattering picture of your fellow castmates."
Dustin agreed, saying, "Imagine how I feel, I haven't talked to Marc Paul or Elizabeth or Tiffani in ages, so I can't imagine what they think, and I'm hoping this will clear it up. It wasn't me, I didn't write this. I was just as shocked and appalled."
That wasn't the first time the actor tried to cash in on his fame. In 2006, he directed a sex tape that he initially claimed he acted in. He later confirmed that it wasn't him in the scenes and that the whole thing was about money.
"There was a stunt person," he said. "I had to take a chance. What if that thing had made $3 or 4 million?"
For all his mistakes, Dustin said he's hoping the interview paints him in a better light.
"I want to put the tomfoolery and malarkey behind me… for that clean slate," he said, "time for a change."