Morgan Spurlock, Controversial Director Of McDonald’s Documentary, Dead At 53 

By Sckylar Gibby-Brown | Published

Morgan Spurlock, the acclaimed filmmaker behind the groundbreaking documentary Super Size Me, has tragically passed away at the age of 53 due to complications from cancer. Spurlock, known for his bold and thought-provoking approach to filmmaking, leaves behind a legacy of impactful documentaries that challenged societal norms and sparked important conversations.

A Life-Changing Experiment

Super Size Me, released in 2004, catapulted Morgan Spurlock to international fame. In the film, he embarked on a daring experiment, consuming only McDonald’s food for an entire month to investigate the health implications of a fast-food diet. The documentary not only shed light on the alarming effects of excessive fast-food consumption on physical health but also raised questions about the practices of the food industry.

Super Size Me Changed America

The film’s impact was profound, earning Morgan Spurlock an Oscar nomination for Best Documentary and igniting a global dialogue about diet, nutrition, and corporate responsibility. His willingness to put himself at the center of the narrative, documenting his own physical and emotional struggles during the experiment, resonated with audiences worldwide and put sweat on the brow of McDonald’s executives.

Following Morgan Spurlock’s documentary, McDonald’s put out a press release claiming the filmmaker’s movie was “unrealistic” and defending their menus to the public. The fast food chain published ads in multiple British newspapers explaining that their food was meant to be eaten as “part of a balanced diet.” Still, the brand ended up trashing its Super Size option later that year.

The Hunt For Bin Laden

Morgan Spurlock’s dedication to his craft extended beyond Super Size Me. Throughout his career, he directed over 20 films and documentaries, exploring a diverse range of subjects, from the hunt for Osama bin Laden to the inner workings of consumer marketing. His work was characterized by its fearless exploration of complex issues and its commitment to uncovering uncomfortable truths.

Exploring The Dark Side Of Movies

Morgan Spurlock’s most famous documentaries include Where in the World is Osama bin Laden, where Spurlock filmed himself touring the Middle East to discuss the war on terror, The Greatest Movie Ever Sold, a documentary on branding, advertising, and product placement that is funded by brands, advertising, and product placement, and Mansome, a documentary that delves into the question: In an era of manscaping, metrosexuals, and a plethora of grooming products, what does it mean to be a man?

The #MeToo Controversey

Despite his success, Morgan Spurlock’s life was not without controversy. In 2017, amid the #MeToo movement, he penned a confessional essay acknowledging allegations of sexual misconduct against him. He not only admitted to instances of infidelity but claimed he had cheated on every romantic partner he’d ever had. 

Morgan Spurlock told the public how he had been accused of rape and had once paid a settlement to avoid allegations of sexual harassment. Following his confession, Spurlock stepped down from the production company he co-founded.

A Legacy Of Insightful Films

However, Morgan Spurlock couldn’t be kept from his craft for long. In 2019, he returned to the screen with a sequel to Super Size Me where he purchased a McDonald’s franchise to explore how the fast-food industry had evolved since the release of the original documentary.

In his passing, Morgan Spurlock’s brother and collaborator, Craig, expressed the family’s sorrow, saying in a statement via his publicist that his brother contributed immensely through his creativity, ideas, and kindness and that the world has lost an exceptional talent and a remarkable individual.