‘Lion King,’ ‘Iron Man’ Director Jon Favreau Has a New Netflix Show
Jon Favreau is a busy guy. Known for his directorial blockbusters such as Iron Man, Iron Man 2 and the highly anticipated The Lion King due out this July, Favreau also has a live-action Star Wars series entitled The Mandalorian coming up for Disney’s streaming service. In the past, Favreau showed his acting chops as well, appearing in several films and even played Courtney Cox’s love interest on the hit classic Friends. Now Favreau is hitting the kitchen along with his friend, award-winning chef Roy Choi for a new cooking series.
A foodie in training
Some may remember Favreau’s 2014 film Chef, which he wrote, co-produced, directed, and starred in. Favreau wrote in an article for the Los Angeles Times that he created Chef due to his “obsession with chef culture [that] connected with a story I was kicking around about fatherhood and divorce and recapturing creative passion.” Chef was the catalyst to meeting Choi. “I knew I needed a trustworthy advisor to help me shore up the authenticity of the piece. I sought out chef Roy Choi of Kogi food truck fame.”
In the Los Angeles Times article, Favreau credited Choi, named the film’s technical advisor, for his culinary education. “Over the next several months, under Roy’s guidance, I was off to the culinary school for intensive training, after which I was finally allowed into Roy’s kitchen,” Favreau wrote in the article. “At first I served as a prep cook doing meticulous and painstaking work of preparing ingredients of the mise en place [setting up all the ingredients for the night’s menu]. I eventually worked my way up to line cook during dinner rush at Roy’s various restaurants.”
According to Eater, the friends continued to collaborate after Chef wrapped, working on pop-ups and even considered opening a restaurant, but chose to create a television cooking show instead.
Favreau and Choi: Take Two
So how did they cook up The Chef Show? “It started off very organically… we never really cooked together anymore, because Roy’s busy cooking all day… the idea of cooking and sharing an experience with Roy, that was something interesting to me,” Favreau told Eater. “At first I just got cameras and filmed us cooking in different environments with different people. It was done over the course of three years, and then I would take the footage and just start working on it. I didn’t know if I was going to pitch it somewhere. And the next thing you know, I ended up finishing it, just trusting that in this day and age, we‘d find a good partner. We ended up doing enough episodes to actually deliver a season, and it turned into a Netflix show. They loved the authenticity of it, they loved the passion.”
Hence, The Chef Show was born, airing on June 7 on Netflix. According to Deadline, the show follows the two friends as they visit different venues and cook up their favorite recipes.
“You go to a city, you’re inspired by what’s there, and then you work your way out and mix that up with whatever your background is,” Favreau told Eater. “You bring your thing to it.”
Serving savories to celebs
Favreau and Choi run into some famous friends as they travel across the country to try out their recipes and do some serious culinary chatting. The first episode features Gwyneth Paltrow with the duo in her Goop kitchen, according to Thrillist, cooking up a vegetarian version of a traditionally Jamaican – what else – “pepper pot” soup. The show catches impromptu moments, such as Paltrow and Favreau having a debate on whether she appeared in the film Spider-Man: Homecoming.
Another episode drops in on some of Favreau’s Marvel pals according to Entertainment Weekly, where the two chefs share a seafood meal with Avengers stars Robert Downey, Jr. and Tom Holland while discussing film and food.
The Wrap reported that other guests on show’s eight episodes include Bill Burr, Kevin Feige, the Russo brothers, Andrew Rea, Evan Kleiman, Jazz Singsanong, Robert Rodriguez, David Chang and many more.