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Not all documentaries are engaging enough to make learning fun, but the installments of the BBC’s Planet Earth saga were so gorgeous that learning about the different environments and animals of the world was breathtaking. Sadly, the episodes were so time-consuming and complicated to produce that the BBC never made it past eleven. Now, there’s some very good news on the Planet Earth front: a follow-up series called Planet Earth II is definitely happening.
Naturalist David Attenborough is on board to narrate the new series, which Variety reports is currently set to air in six parts. The characteristics of Earth’s habitats and the extraordinary ways that animals survive in seemingly impossible circumstances will be documented in detail.
Executive producer Mike Gunton has big plans in store for the series. Planet Earth II will be shot in UHD – that is, ultra high definition - to show off the epic scale and ambition of the endeavor. He guarantees that the experience will be unique, immersive, and utterly game-changing for how documentaries are produced.
Planet Earth II has only just inked its first sales deals, so we can’t exactly expect new footage in the particularly near future, but the BBC is presenting the project as well as Attenborough to international buyers for the BBC Worldwide Showcase. A second Planet Earth is becoming a reality, and it couldn’t be more exciting considering the wonder of the first.
The announcement of Planet Earth II comes ten years after Planet Earth hit the airwaves and dazzled viewers back in 2006. Critically acclaimed, it was the first documentary series to be produced in HD. More than 320 territories bought the rights to air Planet Earth, and we can be sure that plenty will be lining up for Planet Earth II. The original, also narrated by David Attenborough, won four Emmys.
Planet Earth II is the first official follow-up to Planet Earth, but the team behind the documentary series has been busy on an avenue other than the BBC. In 2015, the crew signed on to produce a similar series for Netflix, called Our Planet. Planet Earth took five years to accumulate all of the footage to put together the eleven spellbinding specials, while Our Planet was given four years to put together eight special to stream, and it won’t be available to binge-watch until 2019.
We may still have quite a wait ahead of us until Planet Earth II or Our Planet are available, but there is some small consolation in the fact that all eleven episodes of Planet Earth can be streamed on Netflix right now. Even for those of us who have already watched or ever re-watched the original series, there’s always something new to notice in the far-flung habitats of the world caught on camera for Planet Earth.