Speed Reads


Celebrity Botox expert Frederic Brandt committed suicide, and publicist cites Tina Fey

On Sunday, Dr. Frederic Brandt committed suicide at his home in Coconut Grove, Florida, according to Miami police. The 65-year-old dermatologist was much sought-after by celebrities and other patients for his encyclopedic knowledge and mastery of anti-aging techniques — W magazine once dubbed him the "Baron of Botox."

"For all his apparent flamboyance, his fondness for outlandish designs from labels like Comme des Garçons, and his stellar clientele — including supermodels, trophy wives, industrial titans of either sex, and Madonna — Dr. Brandt was an esteemed physician," writes Guy Trebly at The New York Times.

Brandt had been suffering from depression, according to publicist Susan Biegacz, and in recent weeks had been "devastated" by Martin Short's character, Dr. Sidney Grant (Franff), in Tina Fey's Netflix series, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmitdt. The character has some notable physical and professional resemblance to Brandt, and the show "held the character to ridicule by flaunting an exaggerated speech impediment due to the overdoing of plastic surgery," The Miami Herald reports.

Still, "he did not commit suicide because of the show," said another Brandt publicist, Jacquie Tractenberg. "The show didn't help. It was mean. He felt bullied. It was mean-spirited picking at the way he looked for no reason at all. But he suffered from depression before that." Miami Herald celebrity columnist Lesley Abravanel has a remembrance of Brandt, with footage of Short's character, in the video below. —Peter Weber