Can I stream Roadrunner Anthony Bourdain?
He tragically took his own life in 2018 at age 61. The film will later broadcast on CNN and stream on HBO Max. DeadlineAnthony Bourdain Doc ‘Roadrunner’ Hits Record $1.9M Opening; Welcome Back Arthouse!
20 July, 2021 - 09:59am
How do you navigate the thin line between honesty and exploitation in telling the stories of those who aren’t in a position to tell them themselves?
The new documentary on the famed chef is a glimpse into a singular life, but in many ways, it’s a story we’ve become sadly all too familiar with
‘Roadrunner’ director Morgan Neville wants to understand Bourdain’s death; the audience wants to understand Bourdain. He was an author and host but more importantly a guide. A travel guide, yes, but more so a master or tutor.
Sean, Amanda, and Chris bid on 2021’s upcoming movie slate, and Morgan Neville stops by to discuss his new Anthony Bourdain documentary
Dave and Chris bring in ‘Roadrunner’ director Morgan Neville to reflect on food media titan Anthony Bourdain’s life, career, death, and legacy
19 July, 2021 - 02:55pm
Roadrunner: A Film About Anthony Bourdain director Morgan Neville revealed why he decided against interviewing Argento, 45, for the film, which made its theatrical debut on Friday.
Bourdain and Argento were dating before his death on June 8, 2018. Argento faced backlash following the chef's death when images surfaced of her getting close to a journalist friend, which were taken before Bourdain died.
"We debated it for months," Neville told Vulture of possibly interviewing Argento. "I just felt like if I crack that door open, I really better be damn sure it's what I want. Because it would have been painful for a lot of people, honestly, if I had interviewed her. So I just said—and believe me, we talked and talked about it—is this really what I want?"
Neville said he thought about how he'd handle adding Argento's voice in the film, but that "it became this kind of narrative quicksand."
"It just became this thing that made me feel like I was sinking into this rabbit hole of she said, they said, and it just was not the film I wanted to make," Neville continued. "I just want to know why he was who he was and felt like the balance of the film would have tipped over if I had put her in it."
"Again, we played with edits of trying to go deeper into the story and looking at everything she had said. And every time I even screened it for people in longer versions, all I got were people wanting to go down this rabbit hole of more and more about their relationship in the last year of his life," Neville added. "I felt like I'm trying to make a psychological portrait of a person's entire life. And I just didn't want to be capsized by it. So I made the call. People can disagree."
Months after Bourdain died, Argento tearfully opened up about the moment she found out her boyfriend had died and discussed intimate details of their relationship while chatting with DailyMailTV.
"People say I murdered him. They say I killed him," she said at the time. "People need to think that he killed himself for something like this? He had cheated on me too. It wasn't a problem for us. He was a man who traveled 265 days a year. When we saw each other we took really great pleasure in each other's company. But we are not children. We are grown-ups."
Neville also spoke about the decision to omit Argento from his film to Indiewire, saying, "We'd been editing for a long time and part of it is that once you start getting into revelations that came out after he died—that he was supporting lawsuits, things like that—once you start to crack the door open on that, it just becomes insanely complicated."
The Oscar-winning director said the filmmakers were "pretty deep" into filming and editing the movie when they decided against including Argento.
Roadrunner: A Film About Anthony Bourdain earned $1.9 million in the U.S. in its opening weekend—the strongest opening for a documentary this year.
The beloved chef died by suicide in 2018, at age 61 while in France filming an episode of his hit CNN show, Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown, with fellow chef Eric Ripert. Roadrunner touches on his mental health struggles after rising to fame following his 1999 New Yorker essay "Don't Eat Before Reading This."
Before Bourdain was found dead by suicide in June, the chef supported Argento both creatively and personally. The pair collaborated on his hit CNN show Parts Unknown, having met on the set of an episode set in her native Rome in 2016.
"She's a really accomplished director and writer along with being a longtime actress and a real sponge for culture, music, literature," Bourdain told PEOPLE in 2017. "She's enormously helpful and inspiring."
In June, Argento shared a series of photographs and videos of the chef on Instagram, writing, "Celebrating the most incredible man I have ever met."
"Missing you every day. Cherishing each moment we shared in our life together," she continued. "I feel your presence and your strength."
"You shine so bright within me," added Argento. "I love you my A. Happy birthday ❤️."
Roadrunner: A Film About Anthony Bourdain is now playing in theaters. It will later be broadcast on CNN and stream on HBO Max.