BBC Worldwide, the UK pubcaster’s commercial arm, has greenlit Really Cool Stuff (working title), a hybrid science and factual entertainment format that will debut on BBC Knowledge and BBC HD in 2014.
Produced by 360Production, the 10 x 50-minutes series will investigate a wide array of topics, such as why we experience déjà vu, why cats supposedly have nine lives, and where accents come from, using a fast-paced mix of CGI, studio-based scientific experiments and demonstrations. It will be hosted by physicist Greg Foot, biologist Fran Scott, and radio and TV broadcaster Dominic Byrne.
Lucy Pilkington will serve as executive producer for BBC Knowledge, and BBC Worldwide will hold all commercial rights for the show, including global broadcast and distribution.
Really Cool Stuff is the eighth original series to be commissioned as part of VP of commissioning Tracy Forsyth’s strategy of ordering international formats to air in all markets alongside local series, with the goal of increasing the number of original hours airing internationally to 100 by 2014.
“Really Cool Stuff will answer some of those bizarre common-place questions you have always wondered about, no matter where you live in the world – and this is one of the many reasons I believe the show will have wide appeal with our international BBC audiences,” Forsyth said in a statement.
The other series commissioned under the new strategy include Best In Town, Bill’s Kitchen: Notting Hill, Million Dollar Intern and Come Dine With Me South Africa, as well as the in-house productions Dara O Briain’s Science Club, Stargazing and Food and Drink.