Bourdain tormented by sexual harassment claims in Hollywood

Tragic Anthony Bourdain was tormented by the outpouring of sexual harassment claims in Hollywood after his girlfriend, actress Asia Argento came forward as one of the first to accused Harvey Weinstein of rape.

The celebrated TV chef denounced New York restaurant owner Ken Friedman and celebrity chef Mario Batali after claims of inappropriate conduct were made against them, and said feared his behind-the-scenes industry book, titled Kitchen Confidential, had enabled the culture of abuse to continue.

“We are clearly at a long overdue moment in history where everyone, good hearted or not, will HAVE to look at themselves, the part they played in the past, the things they’ve seen, ignored, accepted as normal, or simply missed — and consider what side of history they want to be on in the future,” he wrote in an impassioned essay for Medium last December.

Anthony spoke out in support of Asia (Image: AFP)
He praised her bravery and that of other women affected by sexual abuse (Image: REUTERS)

“To the extent which my work in Kitchen Confidential celebrated or prolonged a culture that allowed the kind of grotesque behaviors we’re hearing about all too frequently is something I think about daily, with real remorse,”

Italian-born Asia was one of the first to levy allegations against Weinstein, accusing him of forcibly performing oral sex on her in 1997 – a claim he strongly denies.

And months before Anthony’s suicide on June 8, award-winning TV personality penned the emotional article, in which he explained he could stay silent no more after meeting, “one extraordinary woman with a particularly awful story to tell.”

Asia and Weinstein at the 2004 Cannes Film Festival (Image: WireImage) She claims to have been a victim 7 years before this photograph

“In these current circumstances, one must pick a side. I stand unhesitatingly and unwaveringly with the women,” he wrote.

“Not out of virtue, or integrity, or high moral outrage — as much as I’d like to say so — but because late in life, I met one extraordinary woman with a particularly awful story to tell, who introduced me to other extraordinary women with equally awful stories.

“I am grateful to them for their courage, and inspired by them. That doesn’t make me any more enlightened than any other man who has begun listening and paying attention. It does makes me, I hope, slightly less stupid.”

The couple started dating in early 2017 (Image: WENN.com)

Anthony first met Hollywood actress Asia when she appeared on the Rome episode of his travel show, Antony Bourdain: Parts Unknown in early 2017, soon after his split from ex-wife Ottavia, and he praised those who have added their voices to Asia’s, honouring the women for braving “crushing levels of public skepticism, vilification, shaming, and retribution,” in order to be heard.

Asia, 42, first came face-to-face with Weinstein on the set of Mirimax’s B. Monkey and claims he forced her to massage him with lotion before performing non-consensual oral sex on her in his hotel room.

Aged just 21 at the time, she described the alleged attack as a ‘horrible trauma’, telling The New Yorker magazine, “He was so big. It wouldn’t stop. It was a nightmare. I was not willing.

“I said, ‘No, no, no!’ It’s twisted. A scary fairytale,” she added.

Weinstein resolutely denies the allegations.


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