Discovery, BBC Team Again for ‘Frozen Planet’ TV Event for 2012

On the heels of their huge success with the Emmy-wining Planet Earth series, Discovery Channel is once again partnering with the BBC Natural History Unit to co-produce the eight-part documentary Frozen Planet, officials said Wednesday.

The ambitious new project is set to air in 2012 and will be shot entirely in high definition using cutting edge technology -- the Cineflex, manufactured by Axsys -- to allow for undisturbed observation of animal behavior. The project will chronicle the eco systems and animals of the Arctic and Antarctic, which is extremely timely given that both Polar Regions are on the frontline of climate change research.  

The Arctic and Antarctic remain the greatest wilderness on Earth, according to Discovery, and much of these regions and animal behaviors have never been filmed before. Until recently the Russian Arctic has been closed to filmmakers, and most of Antarctica’s most spectacular scenery has never been recorded, according to Discovery. Almost all polar wildlife feeds in the sea, and yet the whole under ice world remains unseen.

Discovery Channel was a co-production partner with the BBC for the natural history series Planet Earth, which won four Emmys – including one for best non-fiction series -- and was a ratings hit, Planet.

“Core to Discovery Channel’s mission is to educate viewers about the world around us and show them things that have never been seen before through new technologies,” Discovery Channel president and general manager John Ford said in a prepared statement. “It is exciting to be working with the BBC on a project that takes a deeper look at two of the most extreme areas on the planet. Frozen Planet will amaze viewers in its majesty and inform viewers about the Arctic and Antarctic as the climate changes and the plant and animal life has to evolve or perish.”

Following each episode, three minutes of exclusive behind-the-scenes footage will show viewers exactly how Frozen Planet filmmakers secured the series’ most memorable images. Additional behind the scenes stories and video, and in-depth information about our planet and its animals and habitats, will be available in the Frozen Planet web site on  The site will also include a news feed, photo gallery, and informative games and puzzles.

Frozen Planet is a BBC, Discovery Channel, Discovery Channel Canada, Antena 3 (Spain), ZDF (Germany) and Skai (Greece) co-production. The global partnership was facilitated by BBC Worldwide. Vanessa Berlowitz is the Series Producer and Alastair Fothergill is the Executive Producer for the BBC.