Grant Imahara, an engineer and former MythBusters host, has died. He was 49.
"We are heartbroken to hear this sad news about Grant. He was an important part of our Discovery family and a really wonderful man. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family," a representative for Discovery said in a statement obtained by EW. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Imahara died after a brain aneurysm.
He was most famous for hosting MythBusters, which he joined in season 3, replacing Scottie Chapman as a member of the Build Team. He left the series in 2014, along with cohosts Kari Byron and Tory Belleci. The trio later reunited for Netflix's science-based series White Rabbit Project in 2016.
Behind the scenes, Imahara was known for his work at Lucasfilm's visual effects department, Industrial Light & Magic. He was involved in many of the Star Wars films, as well as The Lost World: Jurassic Park, Van Helsing, and The Matrix movies. He was credited with updating R2-D2's inner workings and operating the robot's movements for the Star Wars prequel trilogy.
Born in 1970, Imahara graduated from the University of Southern California with a degree in electrical engineering, although he considered switching to screenwriting at one point.
Imahara played Sulu in the fan-created web series Star Trek Continues and appeared in Syfy's Eureka, the web series The Guild, and more recently, an episode of Drunk History in 2018. Back in 2010, Imahara chatted with EW about building Craig Ferguson's snarky robot skeleton sidekick on The Late Late Show.
Popular figures from across the entertainment and sci-fi world are mourning Imahara on social media, including his former MythBusters co-host Adam Savage, who also worked on the Star Wars movies.
"I’m at a loss. No words. I’ve been part of two big families with Grant Imahara over the last 22 years," Savage tweeted. "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."
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.— Adam Savage (@donttrythis) July 14, 2020
"I just cannot believe it. I don’t even know what to say. My heart is broken. Goodbye buddy," Belleci tweeted.
Byron shared photos of herself with Imahara, tweeting, "Somedays I wish I had a time machine."
Actress Felicia Day, who created The Guild, called Imahara "a wonderful brilliant person."
"I’m gutted. He was such a wonderful brilliant person. I’m in shock and so upset. Much love to his family," Day wrote.
I’m gutted. He was such a wonderful brilliant person. I’m in shock and so upset. Much love to his family. https://t.co/mFTxiWeqwY— Felicia Day (@feliciaday) July 14, 2020