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BBC orders “Blue Planet” live spin-off event

UK pubcaster BBC will take yet another deep dive to celebrate marine life with Blue Planet Live, airing across a week on BBC1 in March 2019. Spearheaded by the BBC’s public service ...
October 11, 2018

UK pubcaster BBC will take yet another deep dive to celebrate marine life with Blue Planet Live, airing across a week on BBC1 in March 2019.

Spearheaded by the BBC’s public service arm, the 4 x 60-minute program will broadcast live from the east coast of the U.S., the Bahamas and Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, bringing audiences face-to-face with different species of turtles, sharks, whales and more, while shining a light on global environmental challenges.

Chris Packham will be reporting live from the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution in Massachusetts, meeting with scientists, experts and conservationists. He’ll also assess the health of whales during their breeding season and explore their role as bell weathers for ocean health as he explores from above in a helicopter.

Steve Backshall will guide viewers through shark gatherings from a small island in the Bahamas, while Liz Bonnin will monitor new life at the Great Barrier Reef. She’ll report on threats to the environment, including plastic waste in our oceans.

The series will revisit key locations and wildlife populations seen in last year’s Blue Planet II to offer real-time environmental health assessments.

Blue Planet Live will be made by the BBC Studios Natural History Unit, co-produced with the Open University and BBC Learning. Roger Webb serves as EP. It was commissioned by Charlotte Moore, BBC’s director of TV content, Tom McDonald, BBC’s head of commissioning for natural history and specialist factual, and Craig Hunter, BBC’s lead commissioner for natural history and specialist factual.

Blue Planet Live will thrill the millions of viewers who discovered so much from last year’s groundbreaking series that shocked the nation. BBC1 continues to lead that conversation as we travel live around the globe to witness first hand the magnificent marine life within our oceans and wake up to one of the biggest environmental crisis of our times,” said Moore, in a statement.

Blue Planet Live promises to bring spectacular encounters with some of the most extraordinary marine life on the planet whilst also giving the BBC1 audience a new appreciation of the wonders of and the challenges facing our oceans,” added McDonald.

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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