Ozzy takes three weeks off from Ozzfest -- System of a Down will headline while the rocker attends to wife Sharon in chemotherapy
Ozzy Osbourne
Credit: Ozzy Osbourne: Ronald Asadorian/Splash News/Newscom

Ozzfest will have to do without its namesake for three weeks. Ozzy Osbourne will be taking that time off from the annual summer metal tour that bears his name in order to be with his wife and manager, Sharon, as she begins chemotherapy in Los Angeles, he announced Friday. He played his last show in Atlanta on Sunday and will rejoin the tour on Aug. 22 in Denver. The band System of a Down will take over as headliners during Ozzy’s absence, he said in a statement.

”This has been one of the hardest decisions I’ve had to make, and I’m hoping that my fans will understand,” the rocker said. ”Ozzfest must continue with or without me since it’s Sharon’s baby. I want to thank all the bands on Ozzfest and my crew for all their love and support, especially System of a Down.”

Sharon Osbourne was diagnosed with colon cancer only four weeks ago. Surgeons removed a section of her colon on July 3, and Ozzy postponed the opening two dates of Ozzfest to be with her. Later, however, doctors found that the cancer had spread and that she would need three months of chemotherapy, which she was scheduled to start on Monday. She has said she would allow MTV producers to film her treatment for the family’s hit show, ”The Osbournes,” and now, Ozzy will be on camera for part of that treatment as well.

Meanwhile, the family has some good news; the Los Angeles Times reports that Miramax has purchased the DVD rights to ”The Osbournes” for $7 million, bringing the family’s take from the series to $30 million so far. Miramax will release DVDs of both the first and the upcoming second seasons of the foulmouthed family’s show, in both censored and uncensored versions.

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