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CNN Films acquires “The Hunt for Planet B” ahead of NASA mission

CNN Films has acquired domestic rights to the documentary feature The Hunt for Planet B, directed by Academy Award nominee Nathaniel Kahn, and produced by Kahn and Bonnie Hlinomaz, in association with ...
November 1, 2021

CNN Films has acquired domestic rights to the documentary feature The Hunt for Planet B, directed by Academy Award nominee Nathaniel Kahn, and produced by Kahn and Bonnie Hlinomaz, in association with Crazy Boat Pictures.

The Hunt for Planet B premieres November 20 at 9 p.m. ET on CNN. The film follows scientists building and planning for the December launch of NASA’s Webb Space Telescope, which will be able to look more than 13 billion light-years into deep space, yielding new data in the search for possible signs of life on planets outside of our solar system. The doc uses cinema verité interviews, and footage of the scientists’ work and lives.

Considered by NASA to be the “scientific successor” to the Hubble Space Telescope, the Webb telescope is 100 times more powerful than Hubble, and represents a collaboration of NASA and the European and Canadian space agencies. The Webb will begin a journey towards an orbit one million miles away from Earth in December.

The Hunt for Planet B was executive produced by Sandra Evers-Manly, Carleen Beste, Matt Mountain, Lawrence B. Benenson, Gerry Ohrstrom and Alberto Conti. The film premiered at the 2021 SXSW Film Festival and won a Golden Owl for best science documentary at the 2021 Bergen International Film Festival in Norway.

“Nathaniel and his team have crafted a film that prepares the viewer for one of the most thrilling and ambitious space adventures of our lifetime. The film reminds us of what can be accomplished when human curiosity harnesses the power of science to deepen our understanding of our planet and what’s beyond,” said Amy Entelis, executive vice president for talent and content development for CNN.

Entelis and Courtney Sexton, senior vice president for CNN Films, acquired The Hunt for Planet B for CNN. The deal was negotiated by Stacey Wolf, senior vice president of business affairs, and Kelly MacLanahan, assistant general counsel, both for CNN Worldwide, on behalf of CNN Films. It was negotiated by Submarine Entertainment on behalf of Crazy Boat Pictures.

The Hunt For Planet B is the latest tentpole deal for CNN Films, which recently announced their commission with HBO Max of Carole King & James Taylor: Just Call Out My Name, directed by Frank Marshall.

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