Takeru Kobayashi

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Takeru Kobayashi, Nathans Famous Hot Dog Eating Champion
  • Birth Place: Nagano, Japan
  • Date of Birth / Zodiac Sign: 03/15/1978, Pisces
  • Profession: Competitive eater
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Exit Interview: Reality Guru Mike Darnell Recounts His Most Notorious Shows

As the president of alternative programming at Fox, Mike Darnell developed a well-earned reputation as a showman with a wicked mind. "I usually like to take a pitch and twist it into something more evil or more dangerous," says Darnell, who was once called "Fox's Point Man For Perversity" by the New York Times.

Darnell, the man behind some of the most notorious reality series and specials on television over the past two decades, left Fox at the end of July. He's now moving on to Warner Bros. Television Group as president of unscripted and alternative TV.

It's the end of an era for Fox, which meets reporters at the Television Critics Association press tour on Thursday without Darnell for the first time in decades. Network execs are still mulling Darnell's replacement. (Among names that have been rumored for the job: National Geographic Channels CEO David Lyle and president Howard T. Owens; Sharon Levy, Spike TV's executive vice president of original series; and Nigel Lythgoe Productions president Kary McHoul; among others).

American Idol was easily the biggest hit on Darnell's watch, but we all know the ins and outs of that show. Now that he's exiting Fox, we asked Darnell to recount the rest of his greatest reality hits — and misses.

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Joey Chestnut Wins Hot Dog Eating Competition for Fifth Consecutive Year

Joey Chestnut downed 62 hot dogs in 10 minutes to win the 96th Annual Nathan's Hot Dog Eating Competition for the fifth year in a row, according to The Associated Press.

Chestnut, who won $10,000 for his efforts, beat...read more

Kobayashi Released After Hot Dog Scuffle

Takeru "Tsunami" Kobayashi was released from jail after pleading not guilty to charges following his arrest at the 95th annual Nathan's Hot Dog Eating Competition, The Associated Press reports.

Kobayashi faced charges of obstruction of governmental administration, resisting arrest, trespassing and disorderly conduct.

The competitive eater had jumped ...read more

Videos

Hungry - Trailer 1
1 Minute, 13 Grilled Cheese Sandwiches
The Fastest Banana Eating Monkey You'll Ever See
Kobiyashi Eats a Record 68 and Half Hot Dogs to Win Contest

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VIDEO: Top 6 Food Challenges

Whether it's Adam Richman racing against the clock to eat a 3-meter-long bratwurst on Man v. Food or a group of Top Chef Masters competing to create a delectable meal using only the ingredients found on the Lost island, food-challenge shows are addictive — not to mention mouthwatering.

Gail Simmons: Top Chef Masters meets Modern Family

With TLC delving into the gastro-competitive realm with Ultimate Chili Challenge (May 3 at 10/9c) and Chocolate Wars (May 10 at 10/9c), we found it only fitting share our top six food-challenge moments:

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