Discovery’s ‘Phelps Vs. Shark’ Draws 5 Million Viewers

Discovery Channel’s Phelps Vs. Shark: Great Gold Vs. Great White stunt drew more than 5 million viewers in Nielsen Live+3 ratings, the network said Friday. 

The special, which pitted Olympics gold winning swimmer Michael Phelps against a great white in a swimming competition, was the highest-rated 'Shark Week' telecast ever across several demos, including adults 25-54, women 25-54, and women 18-49, said network officials.

Phelps will return to Discovery this Sunday (July 30) with a new shark-themed special, Shark School With Michael Phelps. In the special Phelps will join shark experts to help dispel myths and common misconceptions about sharks, said Discovery.

R. Thomas Umstead

R. Thomas Umstead serves as senior content producer, programming for Multichannel News, Broadcasting + Cable and Next TV. During his more than 30-year career as a print and online journalist, Umstead has written articles on a variety of subjects ranging from TV technology, marketing and sports production to content distribution and development. He has provided expert commentary on television issues and trends for such TV, print, radio and streaming outlets as Fox News, CNBC, the Today show, USA Today, The New York Times and National Public Radio. Umstead has also filmed, produced and edited more than 100 original video interviews, profiles and news reports featuring key cable television executives as well as entertainers and celebrity personalities.