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Discovering the ‘Wild’

The Silver Spring-based Discovery Channel rolls out new episodes of “Man vs. Wild” when the hit series premieres its fourth season at 9 tonight.

This time, English mountaineer and adventurer Bear Grylls ventures into the landlocked country of Zambia in southern Africa. Before heading into the bush, he’ll show viewers how to survive some of the world’s biggest rapids.

Also airing this weekend:


The Oprah Winfrey Show (4 p.m. WJLA-ABC7) — Batten down the couches. Tom Cruise is making another visit to “The Oprah Winfrey Show” for a two-part interview. O-watchers surely will recall his 2005 appearance, when the actor jumped up and down on the talk-show queen’s sofa in an exuberant expression of love for his then wife-to-be, actress Katie Holmes. This time, Mr. Cruise will be interviewed today by Miss Winfrey from his home in Telluride, Colo. He’ll appear in her studio on Monday. Note to Oprah’s couch: You’ve been warned.


The Astronaut Farmer (8 p.m. HBO) — Billy Bob Thornton stars as the gutsy Texas rancher who constructs a rocket in his barn with plans for an orbit around the Earth. Virginia Madsen, Bruce Dern and Tim Blake Nelson co-star.


Masterpiece Theater: Cranford (9 p.m., WETA-Channel 26 and WMPT-Channel 22) — Based on three serialized 19th-century Elizabeth Gaskell novels, “Cranford” chronicles the absurdities and tragedies in the lives of the people in the fictional town of Cranford (reportedly modeled after Knutsford in Cheshire, England) in 1840 — when the small market community is on the cusp of remarkable change. Michael Gambon, Judi Dench and Imelda Staunton are among the stars.

Compiled by Robyn-Denise Yourse from staff, Web and wire reports.