Some of the celebrity chef Anthony Bourdain’s last text conversations with his loved ones before his death are being made public in a new, unofficial memoir on his life.
The New York Times published excerpts from the upcoming book Down and Out in Paradise: The Life of Anthony Bourdain, which have already drawn criticism from many who knew him.
The celebrity chef’s text conversations from the days leading up to his 2018 suicide provide a bleak glimpse into his mental state in those moments.
They detail his career-related suffering, his troubled marriage to his ex-wife, and his tumultuous relationship with Italian actor Asia Argento.
The famous foodie wrote depressing texts to his ex-wife Ottavia Busia-Bourdain, “I despise my fans, too. I hate being famous. I detest my profession.”
“I am lonely and live in continual uncertainty,” he continued.
The best (and most bleak) window into Bourdain’s fragile state of mind is provided by his letters to his lover Asia Argento.
Due to photographs showing them having other partners, they were both angry with one another.
While Argento was seen dancing with a French reporter at a hotel in Rome, Bourdain was spending time with his estranged wife and kid.
After seeing the picture, Bourdain texted Argento, “I’m okay.”
“I am not spiteful. I am not jealous that you have been with another man. I do not own you. You are free. As I said. As I promised. As I truly meant.”
But you were reckless with my life and my emotions, he continued.
The chef’s family is upset over the publication of the texts, which were probably obtained from Bourdain’s wife as she is in charge of managing his estate.
In two emails to the publisher in August, his brother Christopher Bourdain referred to the book as “hurtful and defamatory fiction.”
According to Argento, she made it plain to the book’s author that he did not have permission to “publish whatever I said to him,” in an email to The New York Times.
With all due respect, we disagree that the content in the Book contains defamatory information, and we stand by our upcoming release, said Felice Javit, vice president and senior counsel for the book’s publisher, in response to the charges.
On October 11, Charles Leerhsen’s Down and Out in Paradise: The Life of Anthony Bourdain will be released.