Off the Fence unveils slate of environment-focused documentaries
Off the Fence (OTF) has announced a slate of premium factual content focusing on climate change, biodiversity and the future of the planet, to be produced in partnership with high-profile natural-history prodcos.
Headlining OTF’s slate are a pair of projects produced in collaboration with EarthxTV, the production arm of the non-profit environmental forum that seeks sustainable solutions to environmental challenges.
The first project is The Future from Above (4 x 60 min.), a coproduction between OTF Studios, Sky, EarthxTV, Korean TV Channel, ENA (KT Skylife TV) and Borderless Lab, with funding from the Korean Communications Agency (KCA). The series examines how the world could look in 2050 if humanity embraces the technology and thinking needed to transform our lives to be more conservation-minded.
The second OTF/EarthxTV co-production is Ocean Mysteries (8 x 30 min.), featuring marine biologist, scuba diver and wildlife expert Tom “The Blowfish” Hird. The series combines stunts and pop-science demos with natural history footage to unravel the mysteries behind a colorful cast of ocean creatures.
Meanwhile, Wild Hope (8 x 30 min., pictured), produced by HHMI Tangled Bank Studios and Part2 Pictures in a co-production with Wild Elements, is a new acquisition that profiles everyday people including conservationists and scientists who are restoring and protecting the planet.
Another upbeat vision of the future is provided by The Endangered Generation (w/t), which comes to OTF via a new producer relationship with Australia’s Sweetshop & Green. The feature documentary, narrated by Academy Award-winning actress Laura Dern, challenges the myth that the world is fundamentally driven by selfishness and competition. Instead, scientists, artists and First Nation leaders explore the deep connections that bind us all to life, our world, and one another.
Channel 5 commissions Our Little Farm on the Prairie from Boom
Cardiff-based indie prodco Boom, part of ITV Studios, has been commissioned by Channel 5 to produce Our Little Farm on the Prairie, a 4 x 60-minute series following the lives of the Doan family in the state of North Dakota. The series has been commissioned by Daniel Louw, commissioning editor, non-scripted for Channel 5/Paramount+.
Set on the 17,000 acres of the Doan’s Black Leg Ranch and filmed over the course of the summer, the series will explore the rural lifestyle and rugged American traditions of a Prairie family, which owns a 17,000-acre ranch that they’ve farmed for generations as real-life cowboys in the modern world.
Global distribution for Our Little Farm on the Prairie will be handled by ITV Studios.
Autentic Distribution racks up sales for spring and summer slates
Autentic Distribution, the sales division of factual content company Autentic, has locked in sales for its spring and summer slate in a series of premium factual content around the world.
From its summer slate, the wildlife documentary White Winter: A Season on the Northern Alpine Rim (52 min.) is going to Czech TV and Hungary’s MTVA. MTVA has also bought the history production Almighty and Poor: The Monks of Cluny, while the nature doc Wild Prairie Man (52 min.) is headed to Canal+ in Poland.
The true crime series Inside the Mind of A Con Artist (6 x 52 min.), produced by Autentic’s own production unit, will be available in French-speaking countries via Mediawan.
From its Autentic’s spring slate, the two-part history series Europe’s Forgotten Dictatorships (2 x 45 min.) and The American Führer (52 min.) are going to PBS America UK, while a package of 23 hours led by 13 episodes of the long-running culinary series At Our Neighbour’s Table is headed to MHZ Choice USA.
More than 50 hours of factual programming were acquired by Greece’s ERT, including the latest season of At Our Neighbour’s Table, the historical miniseries Empire Builders: Greece and the one-off Light and Glamour: The History of the French Riviera (52 min.), the latter of which is also heading to Austria’s ORF and to Sweden’s UR.
Meanwhile, N24 in Germany has secured the rights to the current affairs title China’s New Silkroad in Europe (45 min.), while SRF has bought the travel two-parter Apennine Mountains: The Wild Heart of Italy (2 x 45 min.) and the science production Walking: A Cure for Body and Soul (52 min.), which also finds a new home at ERT3, Asharq, Sweden’s UR and YLE Finland. YLE has also picked up the history doc The American Führer (52 min.) and the arts documentary Behind the Curtain: Vermeer Secret (52 min.). Iceland’s RUV has added In Search of Monsters (52 min./90 min.) and Europe’s Forgotten Dictatorships. A package of 26 hours was acquired by Portugal’s RTP including the history miniseries Wrecks (3 x 45 min.) and the wildlife conservation series Wildlife Diaries Australia (6 x 45 min.).
Viaplay picks up Quintus Studios’ Crisis in Cocaine Valley for several territories
International factual content distributor and channel owner Quintus Studios has announced that Viaplay Group has acquired its documentary film Crisis in Cocaine Valley, which explores the effect that COVID-19 has had on a region in the Peruvian Andes dubbed “Cocaine Valley.”
Viaplay Group has picked up the film for its Viaplay streaming service in the Nordic and Baltic countries, the Netherlands and Poland.
The 60-minute documentary is produced by Germany’s Maximus Film and journeys deep in the rainforest to the Peruvian Andes, one of the world’s largest cocaine production sites. The COVID-19 pandemic had far-reaching consequences, threatening the cocaine production business and damaging the local economy.
This article has been updated to include the full list of coproduction partners for The Future from Above in the lead item.