Robert Irvine

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Celebrity TV Chef Robert Irvine Reportedly Fired Over Spiced-Up Resume

Food Network plans to drop celebrity chef Robert Irvine, host of "Dinner: Impossible," from the cable channel's lineup for cooking up a resume with plenty of garnish but light on honest ingredients, according to reports on several online news sites.

Irvine had boasted that he was a graduate of the University of Leeds and had cooked for Princess Diana. Those and other claims were embellishments at best, according to a report Feb. 17 in the St. Petersburg (Fla.) Times.

News of the the newspaper's investigation spread, and on Friday the cable network issued a statement that was disseminated by reporters covering the food and entertainment industry.

Jeff Houck reprinted the statement on his blog, The Stew, on TBO.com in Tampa, Fla.:

"We looked into the situation and found that, as Robert as already admitted, there were some embellishments and inaccuracies in his resume," Food Network President Brooke Johnson is quoted as saying. "The few and minor incidents of the inclusion of these embellishments into 'Dinner Impossible' have been removed.

"The show is, and has always been, completely accurate in the depiction of the cooking challenges faced by Robert. We will continue airing both old shows and the new season of programs currently in production. We have not renewed Robert’s contract for future seasons but will fulfill our contractual obligations."
The network also released a statement from Irvine:

“I was wrong to exaggerate in statements related to my experiences regarding the Royal Family. ... I am truly sorry for the errors in my judgment," Irvine said, as quoted on Houck's blog.

In reference to the Food Network's relationship with Robert Irvine, network president Brooke Johnson says the following:

We looked into the situation and found that, as Robert as already admitted, there were some embellishments and inaccuracies in his resume. The few and minor incidents of the inclusion of these embellishments into ‘Dinner Impossible’ have been removed. The show is, and has always been, completely accurate in the depiction of the cooking challenges faced by Robert. We will continue airing both old shows and the new season of programs currently in production. We have not renewed Robert's contract for future seasons but will fulfill our contractual obligations. We rely on the trust that our viewers have in the accuracy of the information we present, and Robert challenged that trust. We appreciate Robert's remorse about his actions, and we can revisit this decision at the end of the production cycle, but for now we will be looking for a replacement host.
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Robert Irvine's statement is as follows:
"I was wrong to exaggerate in statements related to my experiences regarding the Royal Family. I am proud of my work while serving in the Royal Navy and on board the Royal Yacht Britannia , also as part of the Guest Chef program in the White House with the United States Navy, in addition to my culinary accomplishments. I should have stood on those accomplishments alone, without embellishment. I remain committed and enthusiastic about my work with Food Network and other future endeavors. I am truly sorry for the errors in my judgment. To all my family, friends and loyal fans, I will work tirelessly to regain your trust and continue to use my show and life to benefit the less fortunate."

Questions remain. It's my understanding that the Food Network had recently signed a new contract with Irvine. Does this mean he will continue filming new episodes of Dinner: Impossible until the contract runs its course? And he was among the chefs filmed in the Chefography series. Will his segment be broadcast? Also, we need clarity on the future of Ooze and Schmooze.