Val Kilmer calls Anthony Bourdain’s apparent suicide ‘so selfish’

Val Kilmer sparked controversy for calling Anthony Bourdain’s apparent suicide “selfish” in a lengthy Facebook post on Friday, June 8.

“Oh the darkness. Oh the dark thick pain of loss. The selfishness,” the Top Gun star, 58, captioned a photo of Bourdain, who was found dead at age 61 in his hotel room in Strasbourg, France, earlier on Friday. “How many moments away were you from feeling the love that was universal. From every corner of the world you were loved. So selfish. You’ve given us cause to be so angry.”

Kilmer wrote that a “spiritual guide” once told him that “suicide is the most selfish act a human can execute.” He continued, “Those of us that knew you are shocked and angry and angry and angry selfishly angry, for what you just did to us. Millions I should think. At least a million people like me who imagine they know you. Some imagine they know you even well.”

Val-Kilmer-and-Anthony-Bourdain
Val Kilmer and Anthony BourdainJason LaVeris/FilmMagic; INFphoto.com

The Doors actor went on to ask the late TV personality — who had been open about his past addictions — a series of rhetorical questions, including, “Did you relapse?” and “Did you suffocate?” He then seemingly compared Bourdain’s death with his own battle with throat cancer.

“Would you have taken your life two years ago when like me you were unable to take in food and move it with your tongue over your taste buds because your tongue was too swollen? Is too swollen,” he wrote. “I think and dream and plan on eating and tasting and enjoying every meal I’ve ever enjoyed and every meal I’ve learned to enjoy in my imagination, Altho [sic] I’ve never met a meal I didn’t like in the last 40 years except anything with too much cilantro.”

Kilmer concluded his post, “I fell asleep to watching you enjoy Uruguay [on Parts Unknown] last night. It was a rerun but I always find something I didn’t see before… you left too soon. And I’m going to prove it.”

Several fans called the Top Secret! actor’s message “insensitive” and “clueless,” with one critic writing, “Wow just wow it’s attitudes like this that make having this invisible illness deadly!” Kilmer replied in the comments section: “Clearly you miss my whole point love. I believe that Love can heal. It is not that I believe because he had an illness it was up to him to be solely responsible. You I am sorry to say, didn’t read what I wrote very carefully.”

If you or someone you know is in emotional distress or considering suicide, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).

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Twitter reacts to death of Anthony Bourdain
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Twitter reacts to death of Anthony Bourdain
Stunned and saddened by the loss of Anthony Bourdain. He brought the world into our homes and inspired so many peop… https://t.co/ZIdcW5jLHf
Anthony. One of my idols. Unapologetic, passionate and one of the best storytellers on the planet. Thank you for ma… https://t.co/3iC1qeNlpJ
My deepest condolences to his families and loved ones. He sometimes spoke of his battle with depression. I am sadde… https://t.co/c1c00bKuZ3
Incredibly sad news about Anthony Bourdain. Sending such love to his family, including his CNN family, who must be… https://t.co/brPEDuh4wU
National Suicide Hotline 1 800 273 8255 I’ve brushed up against this darkness and I know it’s a tempting exit but… https://t.co/XlAbitx80I
Truly devastated about @Bourdain. I have no words. Please if you need help, reach out. Call the National Suicide Pr… https://t.co/btzIgTGiIm
This is utterly heartbreaking. Thank you for opening our eyes to parts of the world both cherished and unknown. Wha… https://t.co/6RoOu5G7fr
Anthony Bourdain committed suicide. I feel sick to my stomach. He inspired me to travel the world and get over my f… https://t.co/WHggM6Kj1V
Anthony Bourdain told @nprfreshair in 2016 that experiencing the everyday lives of people around the globe helps gi… https://t.co/W25fZZosEO
Anthony Bourdain, 61 was very dear to me. He was an educator, he was such a foodie who shared his travels, wisdom… https://t.co/lIKOnzUM7u
A friend of @StarTalkRadio. A friend of Food & Culture. A friend to us all. Anthony Bourdain, RIP. (1956-2018). https://t.co/uVqEgldGsL
Here is Anthony Bourdain with a group of children in Gaza. Thank you for shining your light on the dark places. https://t.co/225CETUQZd
Some of us @nytimes old-timers remember being copy-edited by Gladys Bourdain, who would talk so proudly of her son.… https://t.co/tuvPRGUvdN
I know people always roll their eyes at the reaction to celebrity deaths, but for better or worse these people cree… https://t.co/iFlVCN5z73
Anthony Bourdain's episode on Haiti is one of the few things I've watched with my parents. Long after I stopped w… https://t.co/HO6uODDA8o
The thing about Anthony Bourdain was that he enjoyed the simplest meals in the simplest settings the most. Eloquent… https://t.co/T9PfCAZ7tg
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