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Quendrith Johnson

Quendrith Johnson is Los Angeles Correspondent covering everything happening in film in Hollywood... Well, the most interesting things, anyway.
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Rogue Chef Bourdain nod ROADRUNNER is main dish at Tribeca

by Quendrith Johnson, Los Angeles Correspondent

If “Parts Unknown” Chef Anthony Bourdain, a seductive world-traveler, hadn’t killed himself three years ago in France’s Alsace region in a 5 star hotel we would have killed him ourself for making us worried he might become a suicide. Such are the charged emotions Mr. Bourdain, who would have turned 65 this month on June 25, engenders. Filmmaker Morgan Neville, whose documentary work is just as storied as Bourdain's, from “Shotgun Freeway” to “20 Feet from Stardom” fame, takes a tough-love look at this kitchen maestro in “Roadrunner: A Film About Anthony Bourdain” that will have a world premiere at Tribeca Film Fest on June 11. The roll out is Friday, June 11 at Tribeca in New York, then for Bourdain’s 65th birthday on June 25, AFI Docs Fest 2021 will feature the film as a main entree in Los Angeles. Both coasts honoring the man makes sense.

But in case you forgot your Chef Bourdain lore?

Here’s a tapas-like lite menu of the shooting star of fire, sweat, and foodie magic that was this roadrunner.

A former oyster-shell shucker and ne’re-do-well with New Jersey roots, this dashing food artist born in 1956 came up on a diet of cocaine and caviar to rule the roost at Brasserie Les Halles. Upon rising to the top of the gourmet food chain as Executive Chef there in 1998, Tony Bourdain, true to form, ratted out the entire cooking community in NYC and around the world with his cheeky book “Kitchen Confidential” in 2000, a book that came out of a New Yorker article he submitted ‘for the hell of it.’ 

Literally the motto of his life, the hell of it for Anthony Bourdain - who’d eaten ramen with President Barak Obama and things too scary to ingest with adoring strangers worldwide - was apparently deeper than anyone knew. 

At the time of his reported (or some still say alleged) suicide at the border of France and Germany in picturesque Alsace, he’d become mired in the #MeToo muck with Asia Argento, and lost his appetite for dining out.

“Roadrunner: A Film About Anthony Bourdain” that includes ‘film’ to transcend the workaday word of documentary, opens wide on July 16 for the public. Neville's skill as a sentient storyteller promises to honor the late Chef Anthony Bourdain as the EMMY-winning, roguish accidental culinary figurehead that this remarkably selfless former juvenile delinquent became.



Here are the official details:

A documentary about the uncommon life of the late storyteller, explorer, and chef, Anthony Bourdain. The film will have its world premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival on Friday, June 11, 2021.

The documentary is directed by Academy Award® winner Morgan Neville (20 Feet from Stardom, Won’t You Be My Neighbor?). Focus Features will first release the documentary exclusively in theaters on Friday, July 16, 2021 before the film premieres on television on CNN and streams via HBO Max. CNN Films and HBO Max executive produced the film. Neville and Caitrin Rogers are producers of the film under Neville’s Tremolo Productions.

The film will screen as the Centerpiece film at AFI Docs on Friday, June 25, 2021, as mentioned, to commemorate what would have been Bourdain's 65th birthday. “Roadrunner” will be in theaters Friday, July 16, 2021.

Rest is Pasta, Mr. Bourdain.

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About Quendrith Johnson

Johnson Quendrith

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