Life Force

A major new factual series which explores the mysteries of evolution will be launched at MIPCOM later today (Wednesday October 6).

Life Force is a result of a multi-million dollar co-production partnership between NHK, NHNZ, France Télévisions, Science Channel and Animal Planet.  It is the third major series in which NHK and NHNZ have worked together.

In six one hour episodes, the series delves into the science and magic of evolution and unravels the mysteries of how and why the animals in six extraordinary environments have evolved to be so strange and unique.

What sets Life Force apart is a carefully crafted blend of genres.

Exceptional wildlife photography by world-class NHK and NHNZ crews is combined with cinematic-style narratives and cutting edge science to give viewers what NHNZ is calling “evolutionary drama”.

Some of the footage for this series is rare and unusual.  Through innovative use of equipment like color night vision, extreme slo-mo and time-lapse the series captures the behavior of some very uncommon and strange animals. 

NHNZ executive producer Andrew Waterworth says it took over two years to film this series and both Japanese and New Zealand crews generated an “incredible amount of material” to catch on video some of “the world’s most astonishing animals and their behavior”.

NHK executive producer Shinichi Murata is confident that Life Force has all the ingredients to be the next big ratings hit. “The series is remarkable, not only in content that reflects a fusion of genres, but in that it represents a true collaboration of stories and styles,” he says.

Kenichiro Takiguchi – NHK Head of Programming:

“I am excited about this series.  As a public broadcaster, we need to fulfil our viewers’ expectations by providing them with programs on a grand scale. There is especially a demand for excellent natural history programs, so NHK is always looking for documentaries presented in a new style that will have a big impact on a global scale. Life Force is expected to be one of our strongest series to respond to our viewers’ needs.”

Neil Harraway – NHNZ Executive Vice President: Marketing and Development:

“NHNZ is thrilled to partner with NHK on such a significant series. It’s a winning combination that will set new standards in story-telling. Life Force is natural history for the new millennium.   It was an exciting opportunity to collaborate with NHK’s expert filmmakers and pioneers in HD equipment such as low-light cameras and high-speed cameras.”

Caroline Béhar -France Télévisions Commissioning Editor:

 “It has been particularly exciting for France Télévisions to participate in this series, which renews the wildlife genre. In each programme we discover extraordinary animals and extraordinary types of behaviour, thanks to the teams’ unparalleled filming techniques. But the series achieves far more: each program transports us back in time on an evolutionary journey. We discover not only how specific creatures on our planet came to be as they are, but the very processes of evolution itself.”

Debbie Meyers – Science Channel General Manager:

 “We are delighted to once again partner with NHK and NHNZ to create this series. Their work is top quality and they are wonderful creative partners.  We are calling the series ‘Mutant Planet’ because we  think our viewers will appreciate this beautiful series that shows exotic, strange, and amazing ways  that life mutates to survive and thrive.

Rick Holzman – Animal Planet’s Senior Vice President Programming and Scheduling:

“It our absolute pleasure to collaborate with the best natural history filmmaking partners to bring viewers the most compelling, visually stunning and innovative natural history projects in the world. This series expands our continued effort to deliver beautiful, high definition wildlife stories from the natural world in a new way.”