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Morgan Spurlock, Director Of Controversial Super Size Me Documentary, Dead At 53

Morgan Spurlock, the director and subject of the controversial fast food documentary "Super Size Me" has died. The filmmaker died on Thursday May 23 in upstate New York due to complications with cancer. Spurlock was 53. His death was confirmed in a statement from his family. "It was a sad day, as we said goodbye to my brother Morgan," wrote Craig Spurlock, the director's brother. "Morgan gave so much through his art, ideas and generosity. Today the world has lost a true creative genius and a special man. I am so proud to have worked together with him." Craig worked alongside his brother Morgan on several projects. 

Spurlock became a cultural figure when he debuted "Super Size Me" to the masses in 2004. The documentary follows Spurlock's efforts to eat only McDonald's for 30 days, documenting how having only fast food would impact his health. The title of the film comes from Spurlock's most important rule: to "super-size" every meal if asked by a McDonald's worker. As the documentary wrapped up, Spurlock claimed to have gained 24.5 pounds. He made other claims as well, suggesting that he suffered from depression and had fat accumulation in his liver.

While the documentary made waves at the box office and was a crucial talking point when it came to obesity in America, "Super Size Me" was nothing short of controversial. Spurlock notably didn't share his food log while engaging in his McDonald's-only diet. Scientists and researchers have attempted to replicate Spurlock's experiment, but have come away with drastically different results. Whether viewers love it or hate it, "Super Size Me" is a movie about food that every foodie should watch at least once.

Morgan Spurlock eventually released a Super Size Me sequel

The impact of "Super Size Me" was nothing short of astounding. Shortly after the picture's release, McDonald's removed its "super size" option, though it did engage in an aggressive PR campaign to refute some of the director's claims. While the film's authenticity is up for debate, "Super Size Me" is one of the few movies that actually changed the world, compelling many to switch-up their diets. Despite the hoopla surrounding "Super Size Me," Morgan Spurlock became a prominent force in the world of documentary filmmaking. The film went on to receive a nomination for best documentary feature at the Oscars. 

In addition to executive producing a number of documentaries, Spurlock continued to helm his own projects, with the most notable being "Where in the World Is Osama bin Laden?" While the film wasn't as much of a rousing success as his fast food effort, the documentary accurately predicted that bin Laden was hiding in Abbottabad, Pakistan. 2011 saw the release of "Comic-Con Episode IV: A Fan's Hope," a film that dissects the culture surrounding San Diego Comic-Con. 

In 2017, Spurlock debuted "Super Size Me 2: Holy Chicken!" The sequel examines how the fast food industry has changed since the original film, and shows Spurlock's efforts to spearhead his own fast food restaurant. The same year "Super Size Me 2" debuted, Spurlock wrote a social media post in which he reflected on his history of sexual misconduct and admitted that he had been accused of rape in college.  

If you or anyone you know has been a victim of sexual assault, help is available. Visit the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network website or contact RAINN's National Helpline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673).