British TV favourites, comedian Dara O Briain and culinary maestro Michel Roux Jnr are to front new formats, co-produced with the BBC for audiences outside the UK. The new shows are revealed as the first co-productions with the BBC’s in-house productions teams, and include the first ever original production for the BBC Lifestyle channel.
BBC Worldwide Channels today unveils two new additions to the slate of original productions for its BBC-branded portfolio around the world. The new programmes are the first co-productions with the BBC’s in-house team since the business announced plans last month to treble the number of original programme hours ordered for its international audience.
For factual channel BBC Knowledge comes Dara O Briain's Science Club, a brand new science magazine format, hosted by the Irish comedian and star of Mock the Week, QI, Live At The Apollo and Dara O Briain: School of Hard Sums. Also ordered for BBC Lifestyle is an international version of the newly revived Food And Drink series, fronted by the Michelin-starred chef Michael Roux Jnr. Food and Drink is BBC Worldwide’s first ever original production for BBC Lifestyle.
Both titles have been co-produced with BBC Two in the UK. Dara O Briain's Science Club and Food and Drink have been ordered by Tracy Forsyth, Vice President, Commissioning, as part of her plan to treble the number of original hours ordered for BBC Knowledge, BBC Entertainment, BBC Lifestyle and UKTV (BBC Worldwide’s general entertainment channel in Australia and New Zealand) in 2012, with the aim of increasing the number of original hours on the channels to 100 by 2014.
Created with global
audiences in mind, the new titles build on one part of Tracy's twin-track
commissioning strategy: to order both international formats which will air in
all markets alongside local productions targeting individual markets.
About the shows
Dara O'Briain's Science Club (6x50 mins)
This new, six-part science series presented by Dara O Briain takes a single subject each week and examines it from lots of different and unexpected angles - from extinction to sex, Einstein to space exploration and brain chemistry to music. The programmes will plug viewers into the latest thinking on hot topics. Combining lively in-depth studio discussion with exploratory films and on-the-spot reports, this series brings some of the world’s foremost thinkers together to share their ideas on everything, from how to avoid asteroid impact to whether or not we are still evolving.
Dara will be joined by materials scientist and engineer Mark Miodownik, neuroscientist Tali Sharot, physicist and oceanographer Helen Czerski and science writer Alok Jha. There will also be special guest appearances from Marcus Brigstocke, James May, Jessica Hynes, Mark Steel, Josh Widdecombe and Ed Byrne.
Dara O'Briain's Science Club will air from 2013 on BBC Knowledge in Africa, Asia, Australia and New Zealand, Italy, Poland and the Nordic region. It will also air on BBC HD (Latin America, Poland, Turkey and the Nordic Region).
Food And Drink (6 x 30 mins)
The first original production for BBC Lifestyle, Food And Drink is a revival of BBC Two’s iconic culinary series. Each episode will feature mouth-watering recipes cooked by Michel Roux and a stellar cast from the world of food and drink who will join him in the kitchen. Food And Drink will play host to the latest debates and discussions from the world of gastronomy, and will showcase the hottest food trends - delivering up-to-date news, views and consumer issues. The series will be vibrant and relevant, providing a fascinating look at what, how and why we eat and drink today.
Food And Drink will air from spring 2013 on BBC Lifestyle in Africa, Asia, the Middle East, Poland and the Nordic Region. It will also air on BBC Entertainment (India and Latin America) and BBC HD (Latina America, Poland, Turkey and the Nordic region).
Tracy Forsyth, Vice President, Commissioning, BBC Worldwide Channels, said, “Dara O Briain's Science Club and Food And Drink are great examples of the high-quality programmes that I am seeking for BBC Worldwide’s international channel portfolio. As well as these popular science and culinary formats holding broad appeal for our viewers around the world, I believe the shows have the potential to be returning series which can be built into global brands.”
Last month, 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.
David Weiland, Acting
Managing Director, BBC Worldwide Channels said, “I’m delighted to be working
with the BBC’s in-house teams – BBC Science and BBC Bristol – on these latest
new productions for the international BBC-branded portfolio. I believe Dara O Briain's
Science Club and Food And Drink will resonate with our viewers around the world
and are the high-quality programmes our global audience expects from the BBC.”
For more information, please contact:
Harriet Otoo, Communications, BBC Worldwide Channels
Tel; +44 (0)208 433 2603
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
I believe Dara O Briain's Science Club and Food And Drink will resonate with our viewers around the world and are the high-quality programmes our global audience expects from the BBC.”