Rock star Meat Loaf reportedly died at 74 after contracting the coronavirus and becoming seriously ill.
The singer, known for hit albums like Bat Out of Hell and appearances in films like Fight Club and The Rocky Horror Picture Show, died Thursday night, his agent confirmed. On Friday, TMZ reported that earlier this week, Meat Loaf was scheduled to attend a business dinner for a show he was working on, but he had to cancel because he "became seriously ill with COVID." His condition "quickly became critical," the outlet said.
It hasn't been officially confirmed that COVID-19 was the rocker's cause of death. A statement posted on his Facebook page didn't mention the cause but said he "passed away tonight surrounded by his wife Deborah, daughters Pearl and Amanda and close friends." The report from TMZ said he had "been outspoken about COVID, railing with folks in Australia recently about vaccine mandates," but that his vaccination status wasn't clear. Last year, he promoted an anti-lockdown song from Eric Clapton and Van Morrison on his Facebook page, The New York Post noted.
Meat Loaf, whose real name was Marvin Lee Aday, had been developing a relationship competition show based on his song "I'd Do Anything for Love (But I Won't Do That)," which was to involve couples competing in various games with a soundtrack of his hit songs, according to Deadline. The dinner he was set to attend this week was connected to his work on that show, TMZ said.
"We know how much he meant to so many of you and we truly appreciate all of the love and support as we move through this time of grief in losing such an inspiring artist and beautiful man," a statement posted to Meat Loaf's Facebook page said. "We thank you for your understanding of our need for privacy at this time."