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BBC Worldwide sells drama, factual into NZ

BBC Worldwide sells drama, factual into NZ

9th April 2008

Cannes / Sydney: BBC Worldwide’s Australasian arm has concluded major deals for more than 500 hours of content with several New Zealand networks ahead of the Mip TV market.

David Attenborough’s Life in Cold Blood (5 x 50) will debut on Prime Television later this year. His exploration of reptiles and amphibians reveals them to be as dramatic, social, warm, sophisticated and passionate as warm-blooded animals. This BBC / Animal Planet co-production completes Attenborough's overview of life on the planet, which began with 1979’s Life on Earth.

Also premiering on Prime is Ashes to Ashes (8 x 50) from Kudos Productions; the sequel to hit time-travel drama series Life on Mars. Alex Drake (Keeley Hawes), a modern-day detective, finds herself transported to 1981 after being shot, and comes face to face with Life on Mars’ famously unreconstructed alpha male, DCI Gene Hunt (Philip Glenister).

The stunning new adaptation of Oliver Twist (2 x 90), starring Timothy Spall and Edward Fox, will air on national broadcaster TVNZ. Other titles licensed include Baby Borrowers on Holiday, (8 x 60) the Love Productions follow-up to the highly successful social experiment; Filthy Rich and Homeless (4 x 60) also from Love, in which five of Britain’s wealthiest people attempt life on the streets for ten days, and Outline Productions’ Dumped (4 x 50), which addresses recycling the hard way by sending ten consumers to live on a rubbish dump.

A further selection of primarily first-run factual content will air on TVNZ’s new digital channel TVNZ7. A number of one-hour Panorama, Horizon and This World specials will debut under TVNZ’s World’s Best Doco strand, including Hunting for Hezbollah, Cannabis: What Teenagers Need to Know, How I Became a Muslim Extremist and Global Warming – Bush’s Climate of Fear.

BBC Worldwide’s Sydney office has also concluded a major factual deal with New Zealand’s Documentary Channel. Among the titles to have their NZ premier on the channel will be The Story of India with Michael Wood (6 x 55), Days That Shook the World S3 (8 x 50), Sanjeev Bhaskar’s Indian Journey (4 x 60) and four series of Holidays In the Danger Zone (4 x 40).

Finally, a significant package of content has been licensed to NZ’s Living Channel and Food TV networks. Programs including The Monastery (3 x 50) Britain’s Best (11 x 46) and two series of The People’s Cookbook (10 x 46) will premier on the networks, while favourites such as Michael Palin’s Sahara (4 x 60), What Not to Wear S6 (5 x 58) and Rick Stein’s Mediterranean Escapes (6 x 60) will also air.

“BBC Worldwide has the ability to deliver volume, quality and diversity from within its unsurpassed catalogue, proving that we really do have something for everyone” said Louisa Bayles, BBC Worldwide’s Sales Manager, NZ. “I know that this excellent range of content will resonate with New Zealanders up and down the country.”


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