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Celeb Chef -- Too Busy for 'Make-A-Wish' Kid

3/25/2011 3:00 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

The Make-a-Wish Foundation had to break some bad news to a 6-year-old cancer patient this week ... when Food Network star Ina Garten informed them she was too busy to cook a meal with the boy ... TMZ has learned.

Ina Garten Enzo

A family member involved with the Make-A-Wish foundation tells us ... a little boy named Enzo was approached by the organization after he was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia three years ago.

Enzo told Make-A-Wish ... he really wanted to cook with the "Barefoot Contessa" host because he would often watch the show with his mother while resting in bed.

M.A.W. approached Garten with the wish last year ... but at the time, she was unable to meet with Enzo due to a book tour.  The organization urged Enzo to pick another wish, but he told them he wanted to wait until she becomes available.

We're told the organization went back to Ina this year ... but her team responded with a "definite no" ... once again, citing scheduling conflicts. 

A member of Enzo's family says the 6-year-old is heartbroken ... and asked parents, "Why doesn't she want to meet me?"

When we called Make-A-Wish for comment on this story, they told us, "From time to time, planning for wishes doesn't turn out as originally envisioned, despite people’s best intentions and efforts throughout the wish-granting process."

They noted that Ina is a "good friend" of the foundation.

A rep for Garten tells us, "Despite her demanding schedule, [Ina] participates and helps as many organizations as she can throughout the year, helping children and adults like Enzo with life threatening and compromising illnesses.

The rep continues, "Unfortunately, as much as she would like to, it's absolutely impossible for her to grant every request she receives."

We're told Enzo has now made a new wish -- he wants to swim with dolphins ... and he's already taking lessons to make his dream come true.


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what kind of heartless bitch blows off a kid like that someone needs to drag her ass down a gravel road doin 70

1310 days ago


And why do we know about this?

1310 days ago


How does she live with herself? in a situation like this, she should have found a way to get this little boy his dying wish! I hope people will not buy any of her books anymore!

1310 days ago


for anyone who has never watched a tv show being produced, it is extremely time consuming from the writing of the show to the filming and the editing and the publicity that gets it aired, it is not just the half hour you see on the air. she is also an author of cookbooks, a contributor to to monthly publications has a line of food products and i don't know what else but the idea is that she is very busy and charitable time is up to the person giving up their and not the strong arm tactics being used by make a wish. ina should NEVER do anything for them after this episode. to the critics, how much of your time or money are you donating before you criticize garten

1310 days ago


to the jerk who said ina has mental problems, where did you get your degree from, the school of opinionated nobodies? it is her choice how much she give of her money and time to what ever she wants and for this to have been put out there to guilt her into doing something she may not want to do is extortion. she does lots for the south fork of l.i. and if she doesn't do anything else that is her choice.

1310 days ago


Hope the bitch rots in hell and the sooner the better!!!

1310 days ago

Politically Incorrect    

I'm going to get BLASTED for saying this, but frankly, I DON'T GIVE A DAMN. Obviously someone is PISSED because they went to the trouble of informing enough people & TMZ & is "leaking" this story to the media. Guess what, is TOUGH any way you slice it. THIS WOMAN IS A CHEF...SHE DIDN'T SIGN UP FOR A JOB LIKE BEING MR. ROGERS OR CAPTAIN KANGAROO WORKING W/KIDS, OK?

I am SO MAD after reading such a leaked story OBVIOUSLY TO MAKE THIS WOMAN LOOK MEAN...again, she's a CHEF, not in the "kids business." MAYBE KIDS AREN'T HER THING. I'm SURE this chef is a decent woman, but maybe she'd rather donate/give her time to other causes, like PETA, Humane Society, GOD KNOWS THERE'S ENOUGH "CAUSES" OUT THERE. Just because she's not "CAVING IN" to a request from Make A Wish Foundation...she should be termed a mean bitch...selfish...whatever? You people who are condemning her ARE SUCKERS. What if you had a good career going & you alotted a certain amount of your time and/or money to "good causes," but maybe taking a WHOLE DAY out of your schedule to "give" to an organization (& a kid) that was something you DIDN'T WANT TO DO...because you were already "filled up" on giving time and/or money to other causes you were dedicated, you should go ahead and DO THIS REQUEST BECAUSE IF YOU DON'T YOU'LL BE MADE TO LOOK EVIL AND SELFISH?! Is THAT HOW THESE ORGANIZATIONS WORK...YOU'RE WELL-KNOWN, GOOD AT WHAT YOU DO...SO YOU ARE "TARGETED" AND ALREADY HAVE COMMITTED TO OTHER WORTHWHILE CAUSES, YOU HAVE A FULL SCHEDULE....WHAT...YOU SHOULD GO AHEAD AND "CAVE IN" LESS YOU PISS OFF Make A Wish Foundation & they LEAK THIS TO THE MEDIA??!!! SHAME ON Make A Wish Foundation. After hearing this, I'LL NEVER, EVER SUPPORT THEM EVER AGAIN.

I feel BAD for this child that has the Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia...the little kid doesn't deserve such a fate. However, THE REQUEST/WISH WAS PRESENTED TO INA GARTEN, and WAS TOLD, "NO." At this point (no matter HOW BAD the kid wanted the chef to cook a meal w/him) THE PARENTS AND THE FOUNDATION SHOULD HAVE EXPLAINED THIS TO THE KID & PERSUADED THE KID TO CHOOSE ANOTHER "WISH," DAMNIT!!! But noooooo...this kid could have ALMOST BEEN GRANTED ANYTHING, BUT JUST ONE THING...and THE PARENTS & FOUNDATION WAITED A YEAR (LEADING THIS KID ON...BTW..WAITING A DAMN YEAR...HOW SICK WAS THIS KID?) & HAVE THE BALLS/AUDACITY TO GO BACK TO THE CHEF & REQUEST AGAIN???!!! Most kids I know don't get such luxuries...this kid could have made another good choice, but was LED ON TO BELIEVE IF HE WAITED ANOTHER YEAR THAT THE CHEF WOULD AGREE??!! SHAME ON Make A Wish AND SHAME ON THE KID'S PARENTS!!!!!!

So now, because Ina Garten is well-known...probably dedicates herself to many other worthy causes...but because she didn't capitulate to A ****TY ORGANIZATION THAT WILL BLACK LIST HER...she's now made out to look like some "evil villain?" Sorry TMZ, sorry Make A Wish, sorry ****ty, entitled can't goad good people into doing something they don't want to do. Just because Ina Garten MAY NOT BE INTO KIDS...OR MAYBE SHE DOESN'T WANT TO SUBJECT HERSELF TO BE AROUND SUCH AN EMOTIONALLY-CHARGED SITUATION....she's DAMNED TO HELL? I AIN'T BUYING IT. Unbeknownst to themselves, Make A Wish Foundation has MADE THEMSELVES OUT TO LOOK LIKE THE ASSES. I am sure MANY PEOPLE'S SYMPATHIES ARE THE SAME AS MINE.

1310 days ago


...and it's not like cooking with Ina is the hip thing for every dying kid to be asking for these days, either. I'm sure she isn't turning down these requests every other day. This is very likely the first and only request ever presented to her by this charity (minus the original request that was turned down last year also). I mean, come on. If you were a dying child, would this be your Big Wish?

Ina needs to get humble really damn fast, be flattered as hell, and backpedal her ass into saying YES.

1310 days ago


I watched her show once. She was so gross. This unattractive, obese thing moaning in (obviously) simulated pleasure while tasting her mediocre cooking. Eeewwww. Sooo not sexy or sensual. Now that I have read this, that she refused not once but twice to work with an honorable foundation to make a very ill child happy, I can only say it again. EEEEEEEWWWWWWWW.

1310 days ago


I've watched her show a few times, but have always thought "something" was up with her. She's always very even toned, when talking, always smiling. Just doesn't seem REAL. Now I know, she isn't real, that she's nothing more than a selfish, self-absorbed "star", who can't make time for a dying child. Are you THAT busy, Ina? REALLY? Don't have time for dying fan? Hope her show goes off the air, and she's put in her place as a has-been. Karma, Ina. KARMA!

1310 days ago


What a greedy **** really bitch take 4 hours out of your sad life and help this kid he wont be watching ina again

1310 days ago


If this story is 100% true, that is messed up Ina.

1310 days ago


Hey 105 how does it feel to be dead inside? No matter how much you kiss up to Ina she still won't be your friend or even care who you are. Get on the right side of this discussion already. She's a horrible person for this, no matter what "tactics" Make a Wish used.

1310 days ago


What is she busy doing? Cooking? She should be in the kitchen anyway. Surely this woman who ive never heard of before can take a half day off to go give some kid the thrill of his short life. I dont care how busy you are, some things are always more important. She will be on her death bead some day, and will be begging for at least one person to come visit her. Nope, sorry, busy at the moment. Have to get that cake in the oven.

1310 days ago


I agree with the person who said she had "mental problems." It's not so much mental problems as I think she is incrediby fake. If you watch her show, she always has that fake smile plastered on her face, even when it's not called for. When she's interacting with people, she'll nervously and very disingenuously laugh. I think she thinks she and her husband are above it all. He is a teacher at Harvard, or some other prestigious university, and they always make trips to France or Paris, that is what she talks about at least, so she is the typical snob that wants to live the I am above all you mortals lifestyle. Her parties are posh and pretentious, there is nothing really relatable when it comes to her. Ughh...she is insufferable. Whenever someone has that cheesy grin plastered on their face, I know that probably behind closed doors, they are a major b*tch, and I guess this proves it. She's fake.

1310 days ago
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