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Untangling the Drama Behind Queen Elizabeth II’s Death Hoax

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As Queen Elizabeth II continues to recover from COVID-19, one blog doesn’t appear to be backing down from its claims that the monarch passed away.

Watch: Queen Elizabeth II Tests Positive for Covid-19

Don’t believe everything you read about Queen Elizabeth II.

On Feb. 22, Hollywood Unlocked inspired more than a few rounds of “God Save the Queen” when they claimed the long-reigning monarch had died at the age of 95.

“Sources close to the Royal Palace notified us exclusively that #QueenElizabeth has passed away,” the blog’s Instagram post stated. “She was scheduled to attend the wedding of British Vogue editor Edward Enninful, but was found dead. Story developing.”

A few hours later, the website shared another post standing by its story. This time, however, it was flagged by Instagram as “false information.”

Hours before the report surfaced, however, a Buckingham Palace spokesperson confirmed the Queen was recovering from COVID-19. “As Her Majesty is still experiencing mild cold like symptoms she has decided, not to undertake her planned virtual engagements today,” the statement read, “but will continue with light duties.”

So while many royal watchers were convinced that Hollywood Unlocked got it wrong, the website’s founder and CEO stood by the story.

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“Regarding the Queen Elizabeth story…” Jason Lee wrote on Instagram. “1. I’ve never lied. 2. I’ve never been wrong. 3. I trust my sources. 4. I have yet to see an official statement from the palace saying otherwise. 5. I’ll be at the Donda concert tonight with YE.”

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Some fans thought that Jason was finally changing his tone when an apology surfaced online in the early morning hours of Feb. 23.

“Our deepest apologies goes out to the #RoyalFamily and all involved in this embarrassing situation,” Hollywood Unlocked reportedly wrote in a since-deleted tweet. “It was an accident and we’re working hard to make sure that this mistake never happens again. The intern journalist was misinformed and published the draft post by mistake. – HU.”

But in another twist few people saw coming, Jason stood by the story yet again on Feb. 23.

“Woke up to some fake account posting a retraction,” he wrote on Twitter. “We do not know that account and we have not retracted our story. There has yet to be an official statement from the Palace. Staying tuned.”

The palace has not commented on Hollywood Unlocked’s report or issued further statements about the Queen’s well-being. 

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