TV personality Anthony Bourdain, considered one of the most influential and celebrated chefs in the world, has committed suicide, CNN reports. He was 61.
At the time of his death, Bourdain was in Strasbourg, France, working on a new episode of his CNN series "Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown." He was found unresponsive in his hotel room by close friend Eric Ripert, also a well-known chef. TMZ reports Bourdain, like designer Kate Spade, had hanged himself.
His employer, CNN, issued the following statement early Friday:
"It is with extraordinary sadness we can confirm the death of our friend and colleague, Anthony Bourdain. His love of great adventure, new friends, fine food and drink and the remarkable stories of the world made him a unique storyteller. His talents never ceased to amaze us and we will miss him very much. Our thoughts and prayers are with his daughter and family at this incredibly difficult time."
CNN anchor Alisyn Camerota teared up Friday morning remembering his impact on his co-workers.
Fellow celebrity chef Sandra Lee said, "I am shocked - Anthony was a larger than life personality with so much talent. He was a gifted, smart, articulate man and even though he could be incredibly critical, especially of me, somehow that was part of his charm. The food entertainment business is a family and every member has their place with a unique personality - we all have a voice within our family and we always stick together. That does not mean we always agree or get along but we all truly love and adore one another, no matter what. I am so very sad. The food entertainment family has lost their bad boy and he will be greatly missed.”
Bourdain rose to fame with the publication of his 2000 best-selling book "Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly," which had been expanded from a widely read 1999 New Yorker article. Along with his current show, which he'd hosted for CNN since 2013, he hosted numerous TV series about food, including "A Cook's Tour" (2002-2003), "Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations" (2005-2012), and "The Layover" (2011-2013).
Bourdain, known as the bad boy of cooking for his brash style, had won practically every award in his profession. In 2014, he won a prestigious Peabody Award, at which time he said, "We ask very simple questions: What makes you happy? What do you eat? What do you like to cook? And everywhere in the world we go and ask these very simple questions, we tend to get some astonishing answers."
On social media, he was an outspoken and frequent commenter on the topic of sexual assault, having dated Italian actress Asia Argento — who accused Harvey Weinstein of rape, a charge he denied — since 2016. Bourdain heaped scorn on many of the famous men accused of impropriety, including fellow chef Mario Batali.
Argento was photographed with writer Hugo Clement this week, leading to speculation that she and Bourdain had broken up, but Argento posted an image of herself with Bourdain just last week that showed the couple embracing.
Many celebrities took to social media to mourn the beloved TV personality, including Gordon Ramsey, Bryan Cranston, and Chrissy Teigen.
Ramsey tweeted, “Stunned and saddened by the loss of Anthony Bourdain. He brought the world into our homes and inspired so many people to explore cultures and cities through their food.”
See more tweets below.
According to AFSP, there are nearly 45,000 suicides every year in the US. Shocking. I was saddened to hear of the deaths of Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain. RIP. It illustrates that success is not immune to depression. We all need to be more aware of our friends who are suffering
Anthony. One of my idols. Unapologetic, passionate and one of the best storytellers on the planet. Thank you for making food so exciting. And always standing up for everything right. Horrible. Why why why. Be at peace now :(