Nat Geo preps true crime series “Missing Dial”

The six-episode series investigates the 2014 disappearance of Cody Dial (pictured), the 27-year-old son of National Geographic Explorer Roman Dial.
May 4, 2016

National Geographic will air a true-crime series about the disappearance of adventurer Cody Dial.

Produced by This Is Just A Test, the six-part Missing Dial will premiere on May 22 at 10 p.m. EST/9 p.m. CST. The series investigates what happened to Dial, the 27-year-old son of National Geographic Explorer Roman Dial who vanished during an expedition through the Costa Rica rainforest in July, 2014.

Roman and Peggy Dial started a GoFundMe campaign to finance a search and spent months in the region, which is known for illegal gold-mining and other illicit activities, but turned up little new info. They decided to return with private investigators and a film crew in tow to add new urgency to the search. “I was right – within a week, we received a significant break in the case,” Roman Dial said in a statement.

Missing Dial follows Roman, a former DEA special agent and a retired United States Air Force pararescue jumper/wilderness expert over eight months as they track down eyewitnesses, trek into the jungle and use hidden cameras and fake identities to uncover clues. In a press release, the U.S. cable net promised “surprising clues and a shocking plot twist that rivals that of a blockbuster movie.”

Missing Dial is more than just a true-crime series where filmmakers look back at past cases,” said Tim Pastore, Nat Geo’s president of original programming and production. “National Geographic not only captured the sensitive and personal journey of the Dials, but also exposed in real time the nuances of this intricate and delicate missing person investigation as clues and leads were being unearthed.”

The series will be available on Hulu and other VOD and TVE platforms the day after the broadcast premiere.

Aengus James and Colin King Miller are the executive producers for This is Just a Test, along with JT Ladt, Vincent Dipersio and Jeff Sells. Brian Skope exec produced for the network.

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Jonathan Paul is a Toronto-based writer into creativity, content, advertising, tech, comics, video games, film, TV, time and space travel.