Back in May, CNN surprised everyone by announcing that Chef Anthony Bourdain, a fixture on the Travel Channel since 2005, would be leaving that network to headline a new series focused on dining traditions around the world.
The series, now known as "Parts Unknown" is part of a massive push by the cable news network to boost its original programming during the weekend.
"We have license to love a wide variety of news, not just war and politics, but other things that reflect all aspects of our lives," Mark Whitaker, CNN executive vice president and managing editor, told the AP. "Examining the world through the prism of Tony’s unique expertise and passions continues CNN’s long-standing commitment to international reporting and to promoting global understanding.”
In a lengthy blog post yesterday, Bourdain opened up on his split with The Travel Channel, lamenting the current management team's decision to use his brand to market products he doesn't support; as well as cheat fans with special episodes made up of repurposed clips.
"I CAN do something when my name and image (such as they are) are used to sell a product without my consent and in violation of prior specific and well crafted legal agreements," wrote Bourdain, hinting at legal action. "And I intend to.
"All of us on the show [No Reservations] would have preferred to go out on a high note—and we tried to do that as best we could, turning in a strong, final season that we are very proud of. We wanted to go leaving a lot of great shows—and nothing but good memories and good will behind. But things just didn’t turn out that way."
You can check out the short preview of "Parts Unknown," premiering in spring 2013 on CNN, below. Bourdain will also appear on Piers Morgan this evening to talk about the project.