Bristol is known around the world for its natural history and wildlife filmmaking. It has been based in the city since 1957 and has made such legendary shows as The Blue Planet and Planet Earth. The latest is Seven Worlds, One Planet
Seven Worlds, One Planet
The latest masterpiece from the BBC Natural History Unit, which starts on 27 October at 6.15pm on BBC1, shows extraordinary wildlife stories and previously unseen wilderness from our planet’s seven unique continents.
When the BBC announced a special screening attended by TV wildlife superstar Sir David Attenborough, the demand was huge. Within 24 hours, 25,000 people had applied for just 300 tickets and by the time applications closed, 77,527 fans had registered!
The odds of getting a ticket were one in 258 and as a BBC spokesperson said, “even Glastonbury tickets are easier to get hold of”.
Such important stories to tell
Thanks to BBC Bristol, we were lucky to get hold of a golden ticket for what was an amazing night.
With environmental campaigning hitting the headlines around the world through the actions of Greta Thunberg and the Extinction Rebellion protests, the timing of this show could not be more perfect.
“Never have these stories been more important to tell,” said Julian Hector, head of BBC Studios’ Natural History Unit, in his introduction to the event.
The statistics for the series are extraordinary.
It took four years to make with filmmakers visiting 41 countries. The team battled every possible type of weather with the journey to Bird Island in South Georgia, which features in the Antarctica episode shown at the screening, taking 11 days in heavy storm conditions.
We aren’t going to give any spoilers but the show is amazing. It’s stunning, awe-inspiring, funny and heartbreaking.
I have to admit I had a tear in my eye several times and there was silence in the packed out Showcase Cinema de Lux in Cabot Circus as the audience took it all in.
Sir David Attenborough is in the room!
After the screening, the BBC’s Sabet Choudhury hosted a Q&A with Sir David Attenborough and members of the production team; Fredi Devas, Jonny Keeling, Caroline Cox and Abi Lees.
Being in the presence of Sir David was quite a moment.
He has been in the business for so long but his passion for the subject is still massive.
“I’m as astonished as you are,” he said addressing the audience. “I sit at home and I get the pictures. I’ve been given a script and my jaw sags. By golly!”
Inevitably the subject of plastic came up. Sir David said his shows have been talking about the damage plastic causes to the planet for years but the message has finally had an impact.
The bell rang and everybody suddenly became aware of it – school children, retired people, everybody. Going to the shops and saying ‘don’t give me this filthy stuff to bring my food back in. Why don’t you give me a paper bag?'”.
He said the environmental movement is “unstoppable now” before adding: “it’s not good enough to go around wagging fingers, we have to explain how the natural world works and why it’s important that we behave ourselves in an ecologically sensitive ways.”
After a fascinating chat, the panellists got up to leave the room. As the did to rapturous applause, an audience shouted: “We love you David!” We couldn’t agree more.
Seven Worlds, One Planet starts on Sunday 27 October at 6.15pm on BBC1.
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This great video from the BBC captures the event perfectly:
Top image: Copyright BBC, photo by Olumide Osinoiki.