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NHK, Al Jazeera Children’s Channel extend copro agreement

A sequel series to Discover Science is among the factual projects to potentially emerge from the new, five-year coproduction agreement.
February 7, 2011

Japanese public broadcaster NHK and Qatar-based broadcaster Al Jazeera Children’s Channel (JCC) have signed a new five-year coproduction agreement, designed to foster the development and production of unique programming in science, discovery, technology, environmental studies and education.

The two broadcasters have worked together as copro partners on Discover Science, which involved NHK affiliate NHK Educational Corporation (NED). Under the new deal, NHK, NED and JCC will discuss a sequel to the series.

JCC will also become a partner in production with NHK/NHK Enterprises and Discovery’s Science Channel for the Legends of the Deep series, currently in production and scheduled to air in 2012. The series will attempt to capture footage of the giant squid in its natural habitat for the first time. The copro was announced in 2009 under the title Giant Squid: Last Mystery of the Deep with the UK’s Atlantic Productions also named as a partner.

Another project being planned under the new deal is Cosmic Shore, which will examine the rarely-documented boundary between Earth’s upper atmosphere and space. Special HD cameras affixed to the International Space Station will be utilized for the project.

“From the relationship that the NHK group has enjoyed with JCC over the years, we know that we share the same vision of contributing to the public good and striving for educational and cultural advancement,” said Hidemi Hyuga, NHK’s executive managing director of broadcasting. “We look forward to working on various cutting-edge projects together.”

“This partnership with the NHK group comes in line with our mandate and ambitions to bring the best and most progressive content to our audience and contribute in shaping their way of life, and the way they view each component in their surroundings,” added Mahmoud Bouneb, executive general manager of JCC. “We aim at producing cutting-edge programming that is valuable for teachers and students alike.”

About The Author
Barry Walsh is editor and content director for realscreen, and has served as editor of the publication since 2009. With a career in entertainment media that spans two decades, prior to realscreen, he held the associate editor post for now defunct sister publication Boards, which focused on the advertising and commercial production industries. Before Boards, he served as editor of Canadian Music Network, a weekly music industry trade, and as music editor for HMV.com. As content director, he also oversees the development of content for the brand's market-leading events, the Realscreen Summit and Realscreen West, as well as new content initiatives.

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