Docs

Science Channel preps “Challenger Investigator” drama

U.S. net Science Channel is following sister network Discovery Channel by making its first foray into scripted drama, with the feature 73 Seconds: The Challenger Investigation, starring William Hurt (pictured).
April 4, 2013

U.S. net Science Channel is following sister network Discovery Channel by making its first foray into scripted drama, with the feature 73 Seconds: The Challenger Investigation, starring William Hurt (pictured).

The 120-minute drama, which is being coproduced with the BBC, will air on the American channel in November. It sees Hurt playing physicist Richard Feynman, who seeks to “cut through cover-ups and agency red tape” to uncover the true cause of the space shuttle tragedy.

The film will be accompanied by a documentary, The Genius of Richard Feynman, which will also be narrated by Hurt. The 60-minute companion piece will detail the real-life journey to find the truth behind the Challenger disaster, and features new interviews, rare archival footage and commentary from fellow scientists on the iconoclastic physicist.

The news comes as Science today (April 4) unveiled its 2013/14 slate as part of parent company Discovery Communication’s Upfront presentation in New York City.

Also on the slate for the network is The Moaning of Life (5 x 60-minute), which is fronted by Karl Pilkington.

The series sees the star of An Idiot Abroad dealing with the challenge of becoming middle-aged, by journeying “across cultures to investigate how people across with globe tackle some of life’s biggest coming-of-age issues,” according to the net. The series is slated for January 2014.

Elsewhere, the net plans to air the 3 x 60-minutes BBC series Monkey Planet in March 2014. The series examines ancient primates, and promises to take viewers “back to our roots to examine how issues of location, genetics and even Darwinism have shaped the human race.”

Science has also confirmed renewals for a number of key titles, including How It’s Made, How Do They Do It?, Oddities, Through The Wormhole with Morgan Freeman and Are We Alone?

“Science and science programming are hotter than ever; from coverage of the NASA Mars Curiosity landing to the discovery of evidence of the Higgs Boson, or ‘God Particle,’” said Debbie Adler Myers, Science Channel’s GM and exec VP.

“At Science Channel, we cater to the intellectually curious with the finest slate of science programming that we’ve ever offered.  With an array of new and returning series and specials, our 2013-2014 Upfront line-up is as deep and diverse as it is entertaining.”

Science’s full 2013/14 Upfront slate, with show descriptions provided by the network, follows below:

 

4Q 2013

73 Seconds: The Challenger Story (1 x 120-minutes)

Premieres November 2013

The BBC and Science Channel coproduce a new factual drama, 73 Seconds: The Challenger Story, starring award-winning actor William Hurt as the brilliant U.S. physicist Richard Feynman, who was instrumental in uncovering the truth behind the space shuttle Challenger disaster of 1986.  Feynman deployed exceptional integrity, charm and relentless scientific logic to investigate the secrets of the shuttle disaster and in doing so, helped make the U.S. space program safer.

 

The Genius of Richard Feynman (1 x 60-minutes)

PREMIERES NOVEMBER 2013

In a companion piece to the film 73 Seconds, Academy-Award-winning actor William Hurt leads this documentary portrait of the iconoclastic quantum genius Richard Feynman. New interviews with his family, collaborators and modern-day physicists draw a portrait of the colorful man, and describe the debt we owe to him. From Los Alamos to nanotechnology; from parallel computers to superfluids and the investigation of the Challenger shuttle disaster, Richard Feynman was integral to many of the most important developments of our age.

 

How Do They Do It? Season 11 (10 x 30-minutes)

Premieres September 2013

Ever wonder how that GPS System you got this holiday season actually works? Or, how engineers fit all that horse power in the Ferrari you wish you had gotten with the GPS?  Science Channel’s popular series How Do They Do It?  Provides answers to these questions and more.  How Do They Do It? goes behind the scenes to discover how to do the things, and make the things, that form the modern world.

 

How It’s Made Season 13 (13 x 30-minutes)

Premieres October 2013

Science Channel fan favorite How It’s Made returns for another season of exploring how many of the everyday objects or products we seldom stop to think about are made. How It’s Made visits dozens of assembly lines where raw materials become finished products right before the viewers’ eyes. In each episode of the series, viewers will be amazed to see how many common items are manufactured in high-tech factories around the world.

 

Oddities Season 4

PREMIERES OCTOBER 2013

For more than a decade, the East Village’s iconic Obscura Antiques & Oddities shop has been New York City’s foremost destination for one-of-a-kind, bizarre-and often shocking-artifacts.  Since becoming the focus of Science Channel’s hit series, Oddities, the Big Apple’s epicenter of the eccentric has become pop culture’s Mecca of the macabre.

 

Fringe Season 5 (13 x 60-minutes)

PREMIERES NOVEMBER 2013

From J.J. Abrams (LOST), Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci – the team behind Star Trek, Mission: Impossible III and Alias – and exec producers Jeff Pinkner and Bryan Burk comes a science-fact thriller about an unlikely trio who uncover a deadly mystery involving a series of unbelievable events. Now revered as a cult classic, Fringe is a fantastical thriller about an unlikely trio who uncover a deadly mystery involving a series of unbelievable events and realize they may be part of a larger, more disturbing pattern that blurs the line between the possible and the impossible.

 

This Changes Everything (6 x 60-minutes)

PREMIERES NOVEMBER 2013

Science Channel and critically acclaimed actor James Woods take viewers on a journey to reveal world-changing breakthroughs and their implications for the future.  Each episode of This Changes Everything will look at one idea or discovery that will critically alter life as we know it: Synthetic Biology, Predictive Analytics, Habitable Planets, Nano Technology.  What’s happening in these game-changing fields?  What does it mean for us? Woods will ask the big questions, ignite debate and reveal a stunning image of the future.

 

SCI Sports: Punkin Chunkin (1 x 120-minutes)

PREMIERES NOVEMBER 2013

For 25 years, the World Championship Punkin Chunkin competition has been launching pumpkins high into the skies above Delaware. Science Channel will be there again this year to catch every far-flinging, high-flying moment. Punkin Chunkin covers every angle of the intense competition from growing special, aerodynamic pumpkins and determining the perfect pumpkin’s mass to the mechanics of the air cannon and the physics of catapults.

 

Survivorman: Ten Days (4 x 60-minutes)

PREMIERES NOVEMBER 2013

Survivorman himself is Les Stroud, filmmaker and outdoor adventurer. Once again he ventures into the wild with no food, no water and no crew. Stroud must rely on his years of training, raw instincts and sheer will to survive. If that weren’t enough, he refuses to bring along a film crew, preferring instead to maintain an authentic survival situation and film the journey himself, dragging 65 pounds of camera gear every inch of the way. And this time, Stroud is upping the ante and spending 10 days surviving alone in some of the world’s harshest environments.

 

1Q 2014

The Moaning of Life (5 x 60-minutes)

PREMIERES JANUARY 2014

The Moaning of Life features Science Channel’s most famous guinea pig, Karl Pilkington as he sets forth into the most daunting adventure of his life: becoming middle-aged. A now well-traveled Pilkington will narrate a journey across cultures to investigate how people across with globe tackle some of life’s biggest coming-of-age issues.

 

BBC: Monkey Planet (3 x 60-minutes)

PREMIERES MARCH 2014

Take a closer look at one of human kinds closest relatives: the ancient primate. Centuries of evolution have allowed for the development of our species, but Monkey Planet takes us back to our roots to examine how issues of location, genetics and even Darwinism have shaped the human race.

 

Mutant Planet Season 2 (3 x 60-minutes)

PREMIERES MARCH 2014

Prepare to be transported to strange worlds within worlds where it seems as if nature has thrown the rule book out the window. Mutant Planet goes in for a closer look, to see how the magic of evolution and the forces of nature have together shaped eccentric animals, eclectic lifestyles and unorthodox patterns of behavior. Each episode focuses on key animals in different regions of our planet, and takes audiences on a journey of detection and discovery to understand the powerful forces that create the mysteries of evolution.

 

Are We Alone? (4 x 60-minutes)

PREMIERES MARCH 2014

Are We Alone? month returns to viewer with a search for answers to bold new questions about mankind’s search for extraterrestrial life. World premiere specials feature leading scientists on the hunt for alien life forms that lie beyond Earth, examine the probable human response to actual aliens landing on Earth, and divulge fascinating new scientific discoveries about the existence of extraterrestrials.

 

Survivorman and Son (2 x 60-minutes)

PREMIERES MARCH 2014

Enigmatic survivalist personality Les Stroud is training the next generation of Survivor Men. In the all-new series, Stroud deploys deep into the wilderness with his son for all-new chapter of highly entertaining episodes that demonstrate the science behind extreme survival methods.

 

Strip The City Season 2 (8 x 60-minutes)

PREMIERES MARCH 2014

Strip The City uses stunning CGI animation to strip major cities naked of their steel, concrete, air, ocean and bedrock – layer by layer – to explore their hidden infrastructure and solve key mysteries surrounding their origins, geology, archaeology, industry, weather and engineering.  As we explore what lies beneath each metropolis we come face to face with the people who are instrumental in keeping these cities alive and well – the engineers building and looking after the city’s infrastructure. This series reveals a world never seen before – an alien geological universe normally hidden under tarmac and concrete – a landscape of unprecedented wonder, turbulence and scale.

 

What Is That? (10 x 30-minutes)

PREMIERES APRIL 2014

What Is That? is an addictive show that leaves viewers guessing just what they’re watching. Each half-hour episode includes five stand-alone segments that use specialty cameras and innovative filming techniques to capture incredible and curiosity-piquing images.

 

2Q 2014

Oddities Season 5 (20 x 30-minutes)

PREMIERES MAY 2014

For more than a decade, the East Village’s iconic Obscura Antiques & Oddities shop has been New York City’s foremost destination for one-of-a-kind, bizarre-and often shocking-artifacts.  Since becoming the focus of Science Channel’s hit series, Oddities, the Big Apple’s epicenter of the eccentric has become pop culture’s Mecca of all things macabre. Join hosts Evan and Mike as they scout and sell some of the most peculiar items on the planet to a market of bizarre buyers.

 

Through The Wormhole Season 5 (5 x 60-minutes)

PREMIERES JUNE 2014

Hosted by Morgan Freeman, Through The Wormhole explores the deepest mysteries of existence — the questions that have puzzled mankind for eternity.  Can we eliminate evil?  What is nothing?  Is there a superior race?  Now, science has evolved to the point where hard facts and evidence may be able to provide us with answers instead of philosophical theories. Through The Wormhole brings together the brightest minds and best ideas from the very edges of science – Astrophysics, Astrobiology, Quantum Mechanics, String Theory, and more – to reveal the extraordinary truth of our Universe.

 

How Do They Do It? Season 12 (10 x 30-minutes)

PREMIERE DATE TBD

Science Channel’s popular series How Do They Do It? is the cure for your average curiosity. It’s the science behind how everyday gadgets function and the series takes viewers on a journey to discover how the world around them works.

 

How It’s Made Season 14 (13 x 30-minutes)

PREMIERE DATE TBD

How It’s Made is the addictive assembly line series that returns to give viewers an exclusive look at how their favorite items are manufactured. The series visits dozens of factories where raw materials transform into finalized products in the scope of a 30-minute episode.

 

3Q 2014

How the Universe Works Season 3 (8 x 60-minutes)

PREMIERES JULY 2014

Journey deep into space and examine the moons, planets and stars that make up the cosmos in How the Universe Works. Combining expert opinion with extraordinary computer generated imagery, the inner workings of space will be revealed as modern astronomy helps to demystify a series of unusual phenomena.


About The Author

Menu

Search