The five-part series, made by Our Planet producer Silverback Films, predated the BBC and Discovery’s 10-year, £300M ($390M) natural history deal signed last year, but will fall under the arrangement after Discovery boarded the show as a co-production partner. Other partners include Germany’s ZDF, China’s CCTV9 and France Televisions.
Attenborough will use A Perfect Planet to explain how weather, ocean currents, the sun and volcanoes foster and shape the natural world. The show will examine these systems from space and zoom in to illuminate individual animal stories, such as that of the snub-nosed monkeys of China. In the final episode, Attenborough will reveal how humans are disrupting Earth’s world order.
“Oceans, sunlight, weather and volcanoes — together these powerful yet fragile forces allow life to flourish in astonishing diversity. They make Earth truly unique — a perfect planet. Our planet is one in a billion, a world teeming with life. But now, a new dominant force is changing the face of Earth: Humans,” Attenborough said. “To preserve our perfect planet we must ensure we become a force for good.”
A Perfect Planet will premier on BBC One later this year. Tencent Penguin Pictures and The Open University are the other co-production partners. Silverback founder Alastair Fothergill is the executive producer, while Huw Cordey is the series producer. Nancy Daniels and Howard Swartz serve as executive producers for Discovery. BBC director of content Charlotte Moore and head of natural history and science commissioning Jack Bootle ordered the series.
Moore said: “It will be a breathtaking series celebrating the intricate systems that allow our planet to thrive, bringing together a unique perspective with groundbreaking camera technology.”