• Bill’s Kitchen: Notting Hill, a new fully-funded series featuring the laid-back Aussie chef as he brings his globally-inspired food to West London, is ordered for BBC Lifestyle • Stargazing, a bespoke version of BBC Two’s Stargazing Live, is ordered for BBC Knowledge as Channels’ next major global viewing event
BBC Worldwide Channels has today unveiled two major new additions to its slate of original productions for its BBC-branded portfolio around the world. Fully-funded production Bill’s Kitchen: Notting Hill - a new series featuring the world-renowned Australian cook - has been commissioned from Furneaux and Edgar Productions for BBC Lifestyle. And Stargazing - a specially customised version of BBC Two’s annual astronomy event Stargazing Live for international audiences – has been commissioned from BBC Science for BBC Knowledge.
The productions have been ordered by BBC Worldwide Channel’s Vice President, Commissioning, Tracy Forsyth, as part of its commitment to making more original content, as well as staging ambitious global television events for viewers of the BBC-branded portfolio around the world.
Bill’s Kitchen: Notting Hill (10 x 50’) will follow the famously relaxed cook at work and at home in London’s cosmopolitan Notting Hill. Renowned for his bright, breezy and no-fuss approach to food, Bill Granger is currently introducing his own brand of modern Australian cooking to UK diners at his new London restaurant. From Roast Pork and Pear Chutney to Vietnamese Salad with carrot and mint, the series showcases Bill’s contemporary, simple recipes as he travels the world in search of culinary inspiration. Whether cooking tea for his daughters and their friends in London or scouring Scandinavian street markets, Bill’s mantra is light, simple and unbelievably delicious...
Created with the international audience in mind, Stargazing will comprise three themed episodes, each 50 minutes long, broadcast from the control room of the Jodrell Bank radio observatory in Cheshire. Each of the episodes will focus on a different area of astronomical interest and discussion – Mars, Earth and The Big Bang. Professor Brian Cox (Wonders of the Universe, Wonders of the Solar System), renowned astronomer Mark Thompson and Liz Bonnin (Bang Goes The Theory) will report on different topics from around the world while Dara O Briain (Dara O Briain’s Science Club, QI, Mock the Week) will anchor the broadcast from a studio at Jodrell.
Tracy Forsyth said: “These two new projects are prime examples of our strategy to produce programming with global appeal which complements our current slate. Stargazing will be a great way for our viewers around the world to share in a landmark event, presented by some of Britain’s best talent. We are one of the only networks in the world that can deliver these global moments and I’m glad to be working with the BBC’s in-house team to give a worldwide platform to one of the UK’sbiggest television events.
“Bill Granger is a great talent who can truly represent a global style of cooking. An Australian, now based in West London, who constantly traverses the world in search of inspiration, Bill will fire our international audiences’ imaginations with his distinctive brand of fusion food. I’m delighted to be working with Furneaux and Edgar productions who will do a great job of bringing the flavour of Bill’s lifestyle to the small screen.”
In March 2012, BBC Worldwide Channels introduced major global viewing events to its channels including Sport Relief Goes Global - a season of comedy specials about the UK fundraising event - in March; Planet Earth Live – which captured the world’s most charismatic animals for an international audience from six different time zones, five continents and seven unique locations - in May; And London Calling – a series of events and programming based around the Diamond Jubilee celebrations - in June.
And In September, BBC Worldwide Channels outlined plans to bolster its original programming slate, through a combination of fully funded series and co-productions from the BBC’s in-house productions teams, as well as the independent production community.
Bill’s Kitchen: Notting Hill will air from June 2013 on BBC Lifestyle in Poland, South Africa, Asia, the Middle East and the Nordic Region, on BBC HD in EMEA and LatAm and on BBC Entertainment in Latin America. Stargazing will air in early 2013 as a synchronised broadcast on BBC Knowledge (Africa, Asia, Australia, Italy, New Zealand, Poland and the Nordic Region) and BBC HD (Latin America, Turkey, Poland and the Nordic Region).
NOTES TO EDITORS
About BBC Worldwide
BBC Worldwide Limited is the main commercial arm and a wholly owned subsidiary of the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC). The company exists to exploit the value of the BBC’s assets for the benefit of the licence fee payer and invest in public service programming in return for rights. The company has five core businesses: Channels, Content & Production, Sales & Distribution, Consumer Products and Global Brands. In 2011/12, BBC Worldwide generated headline profits of £155 million on headline sales of £1085 million and returned £216 million to the BBC. For more detailed performance information please see our Annual Review website: http://www.bbcworldwide.com/annualreview
The first show, Mars, will explore our search for life on Mars and investigate why scientists believe there may have been life on the Red Planet over three billion years ago. Professor Brian Cox will explore the history of the planet, why it is red and why it does not have an atmosphere. Liz Bonnin will also take a close look at Curiosity and the types of Rovers that have been sent to Mars before. The global viewing audience will be shown how to spot planets like Mars in the night, and a ‘Mars Zooniverse’ project will be launched, so viewers can help track down potential sites for liquid water on Mars – a good clue to where life could have existed in the past and a target for future Mars missions.
Episode two, The Big Bang, will let viewers delve into the history of the universe simply by looking at the night sky. On location in Maryland, Liz Bonnin will examine NASA’s space telescopes which enable us to see far back in time, and take a look at the latest piece of apparatus being constructed – the James Webb space telescope – due to launch in 2018. The team will also be hunting for Supernovae and discovering
about the dying stars that put on the greatest firework displays in the
universe. From Australia, Professor Brian Cox
will reveal more secrets of the Big Bang and show viewers how they can listen
to its echoes even today.
In the final episode, Earth, viewers will discover what can be learnt about the planet by staring into space, as well as looking at the earth from space. Mark Thompson will demonstrate to viewers how, in fact, we are hurtling through the earth at breakneck speed, and demonstrate how to take time lapse photos to prove this. From Australia, Professor Brian Cox will show how the southern skies provide vital clues about how we found our position in the universe and Liz Bonnin will journey to the US to find out how NASA tracks the asteroids that endanger the earth. She will also report on how the space agency plans to land asteroids to extract their mineral wealth. The episode will also show viewers how to spot satellites, and monitor the wider solar system, to reveal what they have taught us about Earth.
Stargazing is a BBC Science production for BBC Worldwide Channels, with Helen Thomas as Executive Producer. Please note, the above tx order may be subject to change.
We are one of the only networks in the world that can deliver these global moments and I’m glad to be working with the BBC’s in-house team to give a worldwide platform to one of the UK’s biggest television events.