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Michael Bublé vs. polar bear: the singer recounts his near-death face-off in Canada's tundra

Michael Bublé wearing a black suit points from onstage while holding a microphone to his hand
Michael Bublé's encounter with a polar bear happened after filming a 2003 film in Canada, "The Snow Walker." (Scott Garfitt / Invision / Associated Press)

With the holidays behind him, Michael Bublé is no longer singing about having a merry little Christmas. Instead, he's recalling a hellish wintry scene when he almost got attacked by a group of polar bears.

The "Home" and "Everything" singer was a guest on "The Kelly Clarkson Show," where Clarkson asked him about his brush with death. Bublé said he had just finished filming the 2003 survival drama "The Snow Walker" and was celebrating with the cast in Churchill, Manitoba, a town along the coast of the Hudson Bay in Canada's harsh tundra. During the wrap party, he and the movie's star, Barry Pepper, were drunk and decided to run down to the beach.

"And a guy that lived there just started swearing at us and just screaming, I mean, screaming bloody murder," Bublé said. "We didn't realize we were running to our certain death, because there were polar bears all down the beach."

Read more: The pros and cons of being Michael Bublé

"They're the most aggressive — God, but they're so cuddly," Bublé quipped, drawing laughter from audience. Clarkson referenced the bears from Coca-Cola's iconic commercials.

"Sometimes I wonder about that, how close I was to being like a little polar bear lunch," he said.

"Snow Walker," which also starred "Succession" and "L.A. Confidential" actor James Cromwell, would go on to underperform commercially but found quiet acclaim among critics, particularly for Pepper's performance. Though it was unclear exactly how close Bublé and Pepper were to getting attacked, the Canadian crooner hasn't acted on the big screen since then. Shortly after, he acted in several small roles in various sitcoms and on an episode in the long-running soap opera "Days of Our Lives."

Read more: Michael Bublé is ready to store away the suit for new endeavors: 'It's been cyclical'

After the film, the Burnaby, B.C.-born singer rose to popularity with his 2005 album, “It’s Time.” Two years later, the singer’s “Call Me Irresponsible” earned him his first Grammy award for traditional pop vocal album. Since then, Bublé has collaborated with a variety of musicians, won several other Grammy and Juno awards and toured his music across the globe.

Bublé also gained popularity for his seasonal serenades. Known as the “King of Christmas,” Bublé told Steven Bartlett, podcast host of “Diary of a CEO,” that he has been putting his own spin on holiday classics since way before he became a professional singer.

Last month, the singer announced that he aims to change directions in his career. “I have done the same thing, it’s been cyclical,” he told Bartlett. “I feel like I’m at this point in my life, in my career where I wanna do something different.”

Though he plans on continuing to sing, he added that he feels the "need to express myself in a different way," but did not specify any plans or projects.

Maybe it's time for the singer to return to the big screen?

Times staff writer Alexandra Del Rosario contributed to this report.

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This story originally appeared in Los Angeles Times.