Grant Imahara, who hosted Discovery Channel’s MythBusters and Netflix‘s White Rabbit Project, has died at the age of 49 years old. He passed away suddenly due to a brain aneurysm. The electrical engineer and roboticist had worked in the entertainment industry for over 20 years.
A Varied Career
In 2008, Imahara said of his early goals:
“I liked the challenge of designing and building things, figuring out how something works and how to make it better or apply it in a different way. When I was a kid, I never wanted to be James Bond. I wanted to be Q, because he was the guy who made all the gadgets. I guess you could say that engineering came naturally.”
Imahara went on to study electrical engineering at the University of Southern California. It was there that he developed his lifelong passion for robotics. During his time in school, he debated changing his major to screenwriting, but ended up continuing in the STEM field. Still, his career took him deep in the entertainment industry. He did lighting at Lucasfilms, before moving to the visual effects division of the company, Industrial Light and Magic. There, he worked on Star Wars, The Matrix, Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines, and The Lost World: Jurassic Park.
Eventually, he found his way in front of the camera as the co-host of MythBusters. Part of his duty on the series was designing and operating the many robots that the show used to scientifically prove or disprove myths. Later in his career he moved to Netflix, where he hosted the series White Rabbit Project, which combined his scientific acumen with pop culture history.
Loved ones, fans, and co-workers alike have flocked to Twitter to express their grief. MythBusters co-host Kari Byron tweeted a picture of the two with the caption “Sometimes I wish I had a time machine.” Fellow co-host Adam Savage later tweeted:
“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.”