The popular roboticist was known for his work on the hit Discovery series, Netflix’s “White Rabbit Project” and designing Craig Ferguson’s robot sidekick on “The Late Late Show.”
Grant Imahara, an engineer by trade who gained fame for his work in robotics and as one of the hosts of Discovery Channel’s “MythBusters,” has died suddenly after suffering a brain aneurysm. He was 49.
The reality host joined the popular Discovery series in its third season and stuck around for nearly a decade, departing with co-hosts Kari Byron and Tory Belleci in 2014, only to be reunited with them for Netflix’s one-off “White Rabbit Project.”
“We are heartbroken to hear this sad news about Grant,” said Discovery in a statement. “He was an important part of our Discovery family and a really wonderful man. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family.”
Imahara’s “MythBusters” co-host Adam Savage admitted he was “at a loss” after having shared a career with Imahara for so many years. “Grant was a truly brilliant engineer, artist and performer, but also just such a generous, easygoing, and gentle PERSON,” he shared via Twitter. “Working with Grant was so much fun. I’ll miss my friend.”
Imahara worked with some of the most iconic properties in entertainment through his career as an engineer and robiticist, including R2-D2 during his nine years with Lucasfilm’s THX and ILM and even the Energizer Bunny.
One of his most eclectic — but certainly memorable — creations was for late-night television. Back when Craig Ferguson hosted “The Late Late Show,” he always noted that he didn’t have a co-host or sidekick to banter with the way most late-night hosts did.
Imahara came through, creating for him a robot sidekick in 2010. And Imahara would continue tweaking Geoff Peterson throughout his run on the show. Geoff would stay by Ferguson’s side until their final show together in 2014. According to Imahara, the robot skeleton then went home with the late-night host.
As the news broke Monday night, fans and stars alike took to social media to share their shock and sadness at his sudden passing:
I’m at a loss. No words. I’ve been part of two big families with Grant Imahara over the last 22 years. Grant was a truly brilliant engineer, artist and performer, but also just such a generous, easygoing, and gentle PERSON. Working with Grant was so much fun. I’ll miss my friend.
One of the coolest people from the comic con scene who was so kind to everyone. Selfless and always armed with a smile. Not to mention his passion for science. This is a total shock. Heartbreaking. https://t.co/OLRJtNSrSm#RIPGrantImahara
There are rare, RARE people in this world that are made of pure love, light, and kindness. @grantimahara is one of the brightest. Not an ounce of malice within that soul. Intelligence and heart that eclipse so much shadow. His years of friendship are precious to so many.
Rest In Peace @grantimahara . He was probably one of the nicest most geniune people I been lucky to call a friend in the Bay Area. He always checked up on us & made us laugh. He taught me that I can do anything if I just believed in myself. He made everyone smile. I will miss you pic.twitter.com/Uanv80NSCa