François Hollande and Barack Obama seen here not discussing appearing in a reality TV show. Photo: AFP
French President Francois Hollande said he would not take part in a TV survival show like Barack Obama, joking his
time in office was already close enough to an endurance test in the wilderness.
“I did not know that there were shows like that,” Hollande told journalists during his bi-annual press conference, who asked him if he would consider taking part in a survival reality programme.
“I thought I had been taking part in this show since 2012 and I thank you for being the presenter,” he said, provoking laughter from reporters.
However “reality is sufficiently cruel, sufficiently heavy going and sufficiently demanding not to put oneself on display.”
American TV chain NBC announced in late August that while Obama was on a trip to Alaska to raise awareness about climate change, he would film an episode of “Running Wild with Bear Grylls.”
Grylls, a former trooper with Britain's Special Air Service (SAS), is famous for eating insects and drinking his own urine or animal blood to survive on his television show “Man vs Wild”.
His new series sees him take celebrities such as Kate Winslet and Channing Tatum on adventures in the wildest parts of the world.
Hollande's first three years in office have at times been worthy of a reality TV show.
Dogged by a struggling economy, his popularity plunged to historical lows and his image was further tarnished as his personal life exploded into the tabloids.
In 2014 glossy magazine Closer published photos of Hollande sneaking to a tryst with French actress Julie Gayet, prompting his split with long-term partner Valerie Trierweiler.
Trierweiler then published a scathing tell-all book about her relationship with the president.
Hollande's popularity inched upwards over his handling of a devastating Islamist attack in Paris in January that left 17 people dead, most of them gunned down in the offices of satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo.
However a poll published last week showed that only 20 percent of French voters would like to see him re-elected in 2017.