The Hollywood Reporter Unveils 2013 Reality Heat List
This story first appeared in the April 12 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine.
Twelve years after publishing his gossipy kitchen tell-all Kitchen Confidential, Bourdain now boasts an impressive cache of cool, globe-trotting food-reality series: No Reservations and The Layover still are hot performers for Travel Channel, and on April 14 he will debut Parts Unknown for CNN, which finds him still feasting his way around the world, venturing into remote areas such as war-torn Libya and the Congo. He's also set to further expand his brand as exec producer of The Getaway for the Esquire Network, in which celebrities such as Joel McHale and Aziz Ansari travel the globe, beginning April 23.
While his recent foray into mainstream reality fare with ABC's cooking competition, The Taste, was a misfire (the January debut was met with critical snipes and soft ratings), Bourdain has no regrets. "I didn't expect my hardcore audience to be particularly happy about it, but that didn't stop me from wanting to do it -- or enjoying it," he says. "I'm hoping to do it again."
Bourdain admits to being dismissive of most other gastro-themed reality series (especially those featuring anti-Bourdain types like Guy Fieri) despite their popularity in the unscripted universe: "Other than the occasional glimpse, I tend to give up on a lot of them -- quickly."