A final season of Anthony Bourdain’s hit show “Parts Unknown” will air this fall despite the former chef’s recent suicide.
Bourdain killed himself on June 8 while filming an episode for the series in France.
Viewers have sent numerous messages to CNN praising the program, commenting that the show emboldened them to travel and expressing other such sentiments.
“People said, ‘I was afraid to travel before I watched the show,’ ‘I followed his route,’ ‘I was an addict and I connected with Tony and now I’m fine,’” Amy Entelis, the executive vice president of talent and content at CNN, who helped launch the show in 2013, told the Los Angeles Times.
“Others were angry that he’s not in the world anymore. It’s an incredible outpouring. A lot of people are experiencing what we are.”
“Parts Unknown” is the most popular program for CNN Original Series.
One episode was filmed for the 12th season before Bourdain’s death, featuring Bourdain and CNN host W. Kamau Bell on a trip to Kenya.
"Only one episode — a trip to Kenya with W. Kamau Bell, the host of CNN’s “United Shades of America” — was completed before Bourdain’s death. It will be the last to have Bourdain’s written narration, which gives the series its personal tone." #UnitedShades https://t.co/pQ0TGOe4eo
— W. Kamau Bell (@wkamaubell) August 1, 2018
Four other episodes for the season will be set in Manhattan’s Lower East Side, the Big Bend area of Texas along the border with Mexico and the United States, the Asturias region of Spain, and Indonesia.
Directors with the show’s production company Zero Point Zero will complete those episodes, which will include audio of Bourdain that was gathered while shooting on location at each place. Follow-up interviews will also be shot to help fill out the episodes.
“Each one will feel slightly different depending on what’s gathered in the field,” Entelis said. “They will have the full presence of Tony because you’ll see him, you’ll hear him, you’ll watch him. That layer of his narration will be missing, but it will be replaced by other voices of people who are in the episodes.”
The two remaining episodes in the seven-episode season will be devoted to how Bourdain influenced the world, drawing on fan reactions as well as friends and associates who appeared on the series.
There’s no specific start date for the 12th season of “Parts Unknown,” but CNN told USA Today that it will start sometime in the fall.