The real story: 'It is all false, Rajinikanth not injured, his fall was part of screenplay'
Bengaluru, Jan 28 (IANS): Tamil Superstar Rajinikanth was not injured during the shooting of Discovery channel's new series Into The Wild with Bear Grylls, said the show host in a social media post on Wednesday.
"Please and no he (Rajinikanth) wasn't injured. He was brave, determined and never gave up," said Grylls putting the injury speculation to rest.
Late on Tuesday, a report confirmed that Rajinikanth was not injured during the shooting of Into The Wild with Bear Grylls in the Bandipur Tiger Reserve.
T Balachandra, director of the tiger reserve and conservator of forests dismissed the news of Rajinikanth's injury as fake news.
"It is all false (injury speculation). As per the screenplay, there was a shot in which Rajinikanth had to fall, so while getting down from the rope, he just fell down and everybody rushed. It was all in the screenplay," Balachandra told reporters on Tuesday.
On Wednesday, Discovery India spokesperson confirmed to reporters that Rajinikanth was not injured.
This is contrary to earlier reports that claimed Rajinikanth was injured during his Man vs Wild shoot, and that filming was called off due to safety concerns.
"The shoot went on schedule and as per plan. It went fine. There were rumours being spread," said Discovery India spokesperson about Rajinikanth injury speculation.
In the new Discovery series, Rajinikanth has appealed for water conservation on a war footing as he marks his TV debut after 43 years of cinema via Discovery channel's Into The Wild with Bear Grylls programme.
"This war (water conserving) has to be led at all levels including government, community as well as on the individual front. I believe this show on Discovery is a perfect platform to take the message of conserving water to every home across the country," said the Thalaiva in a statement.
Rajinikanth said every Indian needs to come forward and contribute to water conservation.
On Tuesday, Rajinikanth made television acting debut on Discovery channel's new format series Into The Wild with Bear Grylls, after 43 years of cinema, Discovery said in a statement on Wednesday.
"I agreed to finally make my debut on TV after more than four decades of cinema," said Rajinikanth about shooting for Into The Wild with Bear Grylls.
In August 2019, Grylls had hosted Prime Minister Modi in the Man vs Wild show, which was shot at the Jim Corbett National Park in Uttarakhand in February last year.
Other international icons who featured in the highly popular show include United States President Donald Trump's predecessor Barack Obama, Titanic star Kate Winslet, tennis virtuoso Roger Federer and Hollywood great Julia Roberts and others.
"Into The Wild is a truly unique show, at one level it offers adrenaline-pumping action, while at another, the show lends itself beautifully to driving a specific purpose for the larger good of society," said Rajinikanth.
The Southern star said he readily accepted to act in the new series when officials from Discovery channel approached him, finally marking his TV debut.
Kavithalayaa, a production house founded by Rajinikanth's guru K Balachander also played a significant role in the new series, the actor said without elaborating.
"Bear Grylls has tested the survival skills of multiple celebrity guests, pushing them to their limits; I look forward to the survival challenge in the mesmerising wilderness of India," said Rajinikanth about the popular host, who showcases survival strategies in extremely challenging conditions in the most remote locations around the world.
Also focusing on water conservation in the new programme, Megha Tata, managing director, Discovery, South Asia said the channel wanted to add a layer of purpose with each episode of the newly commissioned series, Into The Wild with Bear Grylls.
"Last year, the show featuring Modi, generated much desired attention on conservation of wildlife; we are confident that the forthcoming episode featuring Rajinikanth will sensitise each one of us about conservation of water," Tata said.
Grylls heaped praise on Rajinikanth, saying that the actor is a phenomenon who has captivated audiences across the world with his work both on-screen and off-screen.
"Our team is all very excited to work closely with Thalaiva! He has always shown such energy and flair in all he does and he will need that courage and determination again on our journey into the beautiful wilds of India," said Grylls, throwing the challenge to the veteran actor.
Into The Wild with Bear Grylls is a new format inspired by Man vs Wild, a wilderness survival television series, produced for Discovery Communications India by The Natural Studios and Banijay Asia.