Big, brave and bold: Autumn 2005 on BBC ONE
In a major new landmark series, BBC ONE dramatises the story of the
people who first uncovered Ancient Egypt for the modern world.
Egypt tells of the intrepid adventurers, archaeologists and explorers
who travelled through Egypt in the 19th and 20th centuries,
igniting a fascination with Egypt that has been burning ever since.
The ancient and modern are woven together in this spectacular series.
The first story tells of the adventures of Howard Carter, who was responsible
for finding the tomb of Tutankhamun, the boy king who died mysteriously
at the age of 18.
Another story is about 'The Great Belzoni', a jack-of-all-trades and
die-hard adventurer, and Ramesses II, possibly the greatest Pharaoh
of them all, who ruled Egypt for over 60 years.
And finally, the series uncovers Jean-Francois Champollion's struggle
to understand and save a lost civilisation; the young French genius
cracked the code of the hieroglyphs and brought back the knowledge of
an ancient and mysterious faith that had been lost to the world for
Filmed on location in Egypt, the series also focuses on the story of
the Ancient Egyptians, whose secrets and belongings the adventurers
were so desperate to uncover.
Did you know...?
Two unborn baby girls were found in Tutankhamun's tomb. They had been
mummified and placed in tiny coffins. The hair, eyelashes and eyeballs
were still preserved. They are thought to be the offspring of Tutankhamun
and his wife, who miscarried at five and seven months.
Lord Carnarvon - Howard Carter's sponsor and friend - died from an
infected mosquito bite on his cheek. When the gold death mask of Tutankhamun
was lifted, he too had a lesion on his cheek.
Prudish Victorian Egyptologists deliberately destroyed the rude parts
of paintings on temple walls to avoid them corrupting others.
Hieroglyphic script remained a mystery for an incredible 1,400 years.
Champollion, the Frenchman who eventually cracked hieroglyphs, could
speak seven languages at the age of 13; including Latin, Greek and Hebrew!
At the precise moment of Lord Carnarvon's death, the lights blacked
out across Cairo and his beloved dog howled and dropped down dead. It
was thought to be the work of the 'curse' of Tutankhamun.
Early Egyptologists camped in empty tombs whilst excavating the Valley
of the Kings. Belzoni actually burned old mummy wrappings to keep warm!
The Story of One
Terry Jones takes viewers on a numerical mystery tour
in The Story Of One, as he retraces the rise of the number one and its
Numbers have elevated us to our greatest achievements and, as Terry
Jones relishes showing, at times they have inspired our greatest stupidities.
From the Greek terror of infinity to the time the Catholic Church
tried to ban zero, this programme revels in the exotica of numbers and
leaves a Python's-eye view of a profoundly overlooked branch of history.
It's a surprising story that starts in a world of cavemen where man
first scratched a mark into a baboon's bone 20,000 years ago.
Scientists have found that these simple marks were regular and numerically
ordered and must have been used for counting.
One took on a three-dimensional form when, 6,000 years ago, the people
of Sumer in the Middle East represented it as a "token".
This transformation went hand in hand with the beginning of arithmetics.
The people could now not only add the number one but could also subtract
with these tokens.
It had a measured existence in Egypt, where they used it to count
distance. They took the length of a man's forearm to his fingertips
and announced this as one cubit.
In Greece, one brought much excitement when they realised that numbers
were intrinsic to musical harmony.
But in Rome, one's magical existence was reduced to a more orderly
and sensible role as it brought structure to the Romans' armies.
One has travelled extensively and lived a full life that has seen it
crash headlong through the most fabulous civilisations in the ancient
world, side-step the Dark Age, stir up the Renaissance, and, finally,
explode into the information age.
Rolf on Art - The Big
Two of the world's greatest paintings will soon become even bigger,
with the help of Rolf Harris and hundreds of artists
from across the UK.
BBC ONE stages two unique public art events, inviting everyone to get
Mona Lisa will bring her enigmatic smile to Edinburgh and Henry VIII
will command an imposing view over London's Trafalgar Square when artists
of all ages and abilities come together to recreate the masterpieces
on a giant scale.
Rolf and his team have just one day to finish their versions of Da
Vinci's Mona Lisa and Holbein's Henry VIII.
Viewers can follow their progress live to see whether Rolf succeeds
in his biggest challenge yet.
Story of God
Professor Robert Winston presents a definitive documentary
series on the history of mankind's quest to understand the nature of
The Story Of God is a marathon journey across continents, cultures
and eras exploring religious beliefs from their earliest incarnations,
through to the development of today's major world religions and the
status of religious faith in a scientific age.
As a man of science and of faith, and as a rationalist and believer,
Lord Winston leads viewers on a personal journey as he seeks out the
story of God.
Travelling extensively across the globe from Iran to Rome, Egypt to
Jerusalem and from Saudi Arabia to America, he visits some breathtaking
places in his bid to uncover the building blocks of faith.
Did you know...?
Seven people in every thousand in England and Wales gave their religion
as "Jedi" in the 2001 Census. A campaign on the internet claimed - wrongly
- that Jedi, the belief system at the heart of the Star Wars films,
would receive official Government recognition as a religion if enough
people quoted it on their Census forms.
The Census also showed that more than seven out of 10 people said that
their religion was Christianity. After Christianity, Islam was the most
common faith with nearly three per cent describing their religion as
Muslim (1.6 million).
Overall, 15 per cent of the British population reported having no religion.
In 2000, the BBC commissioned the largest ever survey on beliefs and
attitudes for the Soul Of Britain series
and found that only 26 per cent of us now believe in a personal God.
On the other hand, 69 per cent think we have a soul, and 25%
believe in reincarnation.
In 2004, another survey for the BBC programme What
The World Thinks Of God found that more than a quarter
of Britons thought the world would be more peaceful with nobody believing
in God, but very few people in other countries agreed.
According to a survey conducted by BBC ONE's Heaven
And Earth Show in 2001, almost half (46 per cent) of
the population believe that the Bible has the most positive influence
on people of any publication and three in ten people (29 per cent) think
this of the Highway Code.
Journey to the Heart
of the Tsunami
At 12.59am on Boxing Day 2004, a massive deep sea quake struck just
off the coast of Indonesia, sparking a tidal wave of monstrous proportions.
Within seven hours, the tsunami had battered Indonesia, Thailand, Sri
Lanka, India and the Maldives, before finally working out its momentum
in East Africa.
More than 220,000 people lost their lives and the world was changed for
In an attempt to understand the devastating wave that shocked the world
on Boxing Day 2004, Journey To The Heart Of The Tsunami accompanies
an expedition of top scientists as they explore the seabed site of the
Sending cameras deep into the abyss to witness first hand the collision
between the Earth's crustal plates, the film not only provides dramatic
footage of the epicentre that triggered the tsunami, but also reports
on the scientific research gathered at the site.
These findings will be hugely beneficial to the understanding of such
phenomena and could even help provide accurate warnings of when and
where the next tsunami may hit.
Seven Hours on Boxing
Seven Hours on Boxing Day marks the first anniversary of the tsunami
and tells the most compelling human stories in the countries worst affected.
These inspiring and heartbreaking accounts are combined with footage
of the wave itself, a disturbing testimony to the ferocious and awesome
power of nature.
TV Factual Publicity
Life in the Undergrowth
Just when you thought there was no more of the natural world left to
film, Sir David Attenborough returns to TV screens
in a landmark new series revealing that he has yet to film most of the
animals in the world.
Although they are all around, these creatures' lives often go virtually
Now, using the latest technology, BBC ONE takes viewers into their
world to discover the amazing stories of the most successful creatures
on Earth: the invertebrates.
Cameras capture not just bugs, beetles, spiders and scorpions, but
also the most amazing butterflies, dragonflies and a host of incredible
creatures never before seen on television.
The invertebrate world is one of magnificent spectacles. David takes
viewers to Taiwan to see swarming purple crow butterflies, to Africa
to witness an army of Matabele ants raid a termite colony, and to North
America in time for the great emergence of 17 year cicadas.
It's a series of incredible colour and beauty, such as iridescent
butterflies and rainbow spiderwebs.
Just over 400 million years ago, creatures left the seas to move on
to what was then a barren and lifeless land. Since that first foothold,
the invertebrates have dominated every part of the Earth and the air
with their numbers and diversity.
For every human, there are 200 million of them. Night vision cameras,
thermal cameras and tiny lenses allow Attenborough to investigate behaviour
that is normally invisible to the human eye and reveal breathtaking
stories, many of which are new to science.
Life In The Undergrowth has been a passionate project for Sir David
Attenborough and a series that he has wanted to make for a long time:
"The tiny creatures of the undergrowth were the first creatures of any
kind to colonise the land.
"They established the foundations of the land's ecosystems and
were able to transcend the limitations of their small size by banding
together in huge communities of millions.
"If we and the rest of the backboned animals were to disappear
overnight, the rest of the world would get on pretty well. But if the
invertebrates were to disappear, the land's ecosystems would collapse.
"Wherever we go on land, these small creatures are within a few
inches of our feet - often disregarded. We would do very well to remember
Invertebrates have always dominated 'our' world. Now, for the first
time, we can enter theirs.
BBC ONE is crawling with insights into insects this Autumn - here are
some big facts about tiny creatures…
About 35,000 species of spiders are known and more are being discovered
Termites invented air conditioning for their mounds, millions of years
ago. Life in the Undergrowth goes inside a mound to see how it works.
The smallest flying Insect is the fairy wasp with a length of only
0.2mm. It flies underwater, as the series will show.
For every pound of people on Earth, there are 300 pounds of insects.
In an old field in South Wales, researchers recently found approximately
one million spiders per acre (2.5 million per hectare).
The world's largest spider is the Goliath Bird-Eating Spider, with
a body length of 3.5 inches, a leg span of 11 inches, fangs measuring
one inch long and a total weight of 4.3 oz.
The largest beetle is now known to be the Titan Beetle from the Amazon
basin. It is up to seven inches (18 cm) long and will appear for the
first time on television in this series.
Dragonflies are the fastest flying insect in the world, attaining
speeds of up to 36mph - no wonder they were so difficult to film!
Children in Need
Broadcasting live from Television Centre, the BBC Children In Need
appeal once again entertains the nation.
After a hugely successful 25th birthday in 2004, raising a total, to
date, of more than £35m, it's time to look to the future.
Some new faces are set to join in the evening when stars of stage
and screen gather to perform their most spectacular musical hits, or
perhaps reveal their hidden talents.
BBC Local Radio and Regional Television also join in the fun on the night with
star-studded events in the regions.
Every single penny donated to the charity goes directly to an organisation
that helps children in the UK - none is ever used for other costs.
One in ten families in the UK is a stepfamily and the figure is rising,
with more than two million children in stepfamilies.
A new BBC series gets to the heart of five stepfamilies to explore
the problems and the challenges.
Suzie Hayman - a Relate-trained counsellor specialising
in stepfamilies - has just six weeks to work with each family to see
if she can identify their problems and help them tackle any conflict.
Suzi explores issues, which will be familiar to stepfamilies across
the country, ranging from coping with exes to merging different family
The Truth About
They have the scariest reputation of all the creatures that have lived
on Earth and now, in a series hosted by Bill Oddie,
viewers can finally learn the truth about some of the world's greatest
beasts and their awesome physical power.
The Truth About Killer Dinosaurs is the ultimate clash of the titans
in which the giants of pre-history, recreated and pitched against each
other, will engage in mortal combat, using the most accurate and naturalistic
CGI 'dinoanimation' ever seen.
The series harnesses new research and gives a fresh perspective on
how the most ferocious killers in history really lived and died.
The Last Tommy
The Great War of 1914-18 wiped out millions of young men. Many of those
who made it home to Blighty never spoke of the horrors of the trenches.
Now, of the five and a half million British and Commonwealth servicemen
who fought, just a handful remain.
The Last Tommy follows the six surviving British veterans, all over
100, and all that's left of the brave band of brothers, as they tell
their stories for the last time.
Harry Patch had tried to forget the horrors, including the loss of
all but two of his entire platoon of 30, in a war in which witnessing
terrible and painful death was commonplace.
But his move to a nursing
home at the age of 100 prompted recollections when the light in the
blanket store, flicked on and off by staff during the night, triggered
flashbacks of shells exploding in No Man's Land.
Arthur Halestrap, now 105, recalls being offered the daughter of a
German family for sex in exchange for food, so near starvation were
they, while Jim Lovell remembers being lied to by the authorities.
Gassed in a German offensive and recovering in a field hospital, he
was told he was being taken for a day trip to the seaside - in fact
he was being transported back to the Front for a final push.
The moving testimonies pay tribute to the extraordinary resilience
and valour of those who not only watched their comrades fall, but have
witnessed their numbers diminishing year by year - just five were present
at the Cenotaph in 2003 - as age slowly claims them, till the last living
memory of the First World War passes away.
Over the last three years, Operation Trident - the Metropolitan Police
unit that deals with gun crime within London's black communities - has
seized 450 guns, 7,000 rounds of ammunition and 960 kilos of drugs.
In April 2005, London had 49 shootings, ranking it the third most
dangerous city in the world.
Revealing a side of London that is rarely seen and often ignored by
the mainstream press, Murder Blues follows Trident's investigations
into the criminals who regularly carry guns and use them with casual
Trident's 350 officers have policed black-on-black gun crime in the
capital since 2000.
Back then, many offenders were Jamaican Yardies involved in drug dealing
or contract killings, but the landscape has changed. Now more than 80 per
cent of Trident's offenders are British-born black youths.
The causes of these shootings are inter-gang rivalries, retaliation,
drugs rip-offs, respect issues and petty arguments.
For example, one shooting took place following a row over a computer
The films show the aftermath, the impact and the consequences of these
brutal and violent crimes - focussing on the bereaved families and the
Cases featured include the murder of a North London gang member, the
shooting of an innocent family man and the attempted murder of a man
who was involved in a minor traffic accident.