Discovery Channel has terminated its relationship with Bear Grylls. The severing of the relationship, which began back in 2006 when Man vs. Wildlaunched on Discovery, comes after the network has allegedly been unable to get Grylls to participate in two unannounced projects he was contracted for, say sources. The sixth season of Man vs. Wild wrapped in August.
“Due to a continuing contractual dispute with Bear Grylls, Discovery has terminated all current productions with him,” a network spokesperson tells The Hollywood Reporter.
“Bear’s goal has always been to make life-empowering shows for his many fans around the globe, and he has taken great risks to bring Discovery such award-winning programming over seven seasons,” said Heather Krug in a statement to THR. “Unfortunately, Bear and Discovery have not been able to come to mutual agreement on new programming, and he disagrees with Discovery’s decision to terminate current productions. Bear has loved the Man vs. Wild journey and looks forward to producing further cutting-edge content again soon for his loyal audience.”
This is not the first time Discovery has had a disagreement with its talent. In 2010, the network suedDeadliest Catch Captains Jonathan and Andy Hillstrand for allegedly failing to complete work on the spinoff Hillstranded. The $3 million lawsuit prompted the Hillstrands and Captain Sig Hansento quit, though a month later the dispute was settled, the suit was dropped and all three returned to work on the show.
Grylls, 37, has parlayed his fame as an extreme outdoorsman into an international media career. He’s written nearly a dozen books, many of them survival guides. His memoir Mud, Sweat and Tears – due to be published in the U.S. in May – already is a best-seller in England and Australia. He’s landed numerous endorsement deals including with Dockers and Degree deodorant. There’s a Man vs. Wildvideo game, he has an iPhone app, and his clothing line is sold at REI and Walmart.