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Discovery's "Man vs. Wild" Caught Faking Aspects Of Show

Discovery Channel is taking a close look at one of its most popular series, "Man vs. Wild," after allegations that its host was in fact spending the night in motels when he was supposed to be surviving the great outdoors.

The network issued a statement Monday in response to an investigation launched by British television network Channel 4. Channel 4 says that host Bear Grylls had partaken of indoor accommodations on at least two occasions when his series had depicted him spending the night in the wild.

In each episode of the series, Grylls is airlifted into the wilderness with only a few tools to aid in his survival, such as a flint or water bottle. A former British special forces soldier, Grylls is typically depicted as surviving for several days without intervention or interruption while cameramen follow him offscreen.

But among the charges made against Grylls is that a raft he is depicted as having built himself actually was constructed and then disassembled by consultants to the show in order for the host to put it together. In another episode, Grylls happens upon what are  referred to as wild horses that were said to be brought in from a trekking station.

"Discovery Communications has learned that isolated elements of the 'Man vs. Wild' show in some episodes were not natural to the environment," the network said in a statement.

But the company gave no indication about parting ways with the series, only making certain unspecified alterations.

"Moving forward, the program will be 100% transparent and all elements of the filming will be explained upfront to our viewers," Discovery said.

They didn't elaborate on what exact measures will be taken but it could simply mean a disclaimer will precede each episode informing that some events are dramatized.

July 24, 2007 |

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