Planet Earth II

TV Plus (South Africa) - - 12 MARCH -

Sea­son 1 BBC Earth (*184) 16:00 Doc­cie

Na­ture doc­cie se­ries Planet Earth II (2016-cur­rent) has rewrit­ten the books on wildlife shows and not just be­cause it took years to make and they have Sir David At­ten­bor­ough nar­rat­ing. We got in­side info straight from the horse’s mouth when we chat­ted to Aussie bi­ol­o­gist-turned-fil­maker Dr Chad­den Hunter, who worked on the se­ries…

What con­vinced you to make Planet Earth II so long af­ter 2006’s Planet Earth? We had new tech­nol­ogy that’s al­lowed us to re­ally get in­side the an­i­mals lives, un­like Planet Earth I, which was about an­i­mal habi­tat. This se­ries was about re­ally see­ing things through the an­i­mal eyes and as you’ve never ex­pe­ri­enced it be­fore. Is there a mo­ment in this sea­son that re­ally stood out for you? One of my high­lights was see­ing the saiga an­te­lope. It’s such a weird-look­ing crea­ture and it’s a relic from the ice age. These an­te­lope have lived along­side woolly mam­moths and sabre-toothed cats and I thought they were ex­tinct, so I’d never see one. We heard they were still around and we went on a mis­sion to find them in the grass­lands of Rus­sia. Is there a mo­ment you’d pre­fer to for­get? In the Oka­vango Delta! We were stuck in our boat sur­rounded by grumpy hip­pos and hun­gry crocodiles. We had to move the boat man­u­ally and I re­mem­ber the mos­qui­toes, my legs get­ting slashed by swamp grass and think­ing that we were go­ing to be eaten alive. Film­ing this kind of show isn’t easy, right? We ran things like a mil­i­tary sched­ule. We spent nine months do­ing re­search be­fore we even went into the field. And then over the space of two years, we had mul­ti­ple teams go­ing out to over 40 dif­fer­ent coun­tries. Col­lec­tively we’ve had to cut over 2 000 hours of footage into seven episodes.

Sir David At­ten­bor­ough is do­ing the nar­rat­ing du­ties.

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