Peschardt’s People

This April, BBC World News premieres a new series of Peschardt’s People. Viewers will get to take a closer look at the lives of some of the most interesting and influential personalities across the Asia-Pacific region. The new series, which lasts 26 weeks, has been filmed across the world in India, the Middle East, Korea, Japan, the UK, New Zealand, Thailand and Singapore.

Over the past six years, Peschardt’s People has become an integral part of the BBC World News schedule. Previous guests have included Robert De Niro, the Royal Family of Bahrain, Toni Collette and Sir Edmund Hillary.

Michael Peschardt is a former Senior Foreign Correspondent with BBC News who has made the relaxed, informal but revealing interview style of Peschardt’s People his trademark. Spending an average of three days with each of his guests, he interviews them about the people, places, and issues that really matter to them, encouraging them to open up and talk sincerely and passionately about their lives.

In the first programme of the new series, Michael interviews Dr Chris O’Brien, the former Head of the Sydney Cancer Centre, whose life has been turned upside down since the discovery of a cancerous tumour in his brain. He talks with courage, dignity and breath-taking honesty about the approach of death – what it means to him and his family and what others might learn from his experiences.

Other Antipodeans to be featured in the new series include Australian Greg Norman and a few New Zealanders, Georgina Beyer, the world’s first transsexual member of parliament, Director Niki Caro and Fashion Designer Suzie Moncrieff.

Transmission times:
Sundays from 12 April, 11.00am
Repeated at 4.30pm Sundays

The series features the following people to name a few…

Episode 1: Dr Chris O’Brien – April 11
A powerful story of how one man has come to terms with what’s been diagnosed as a terminal brain tumour. Dr Chris O’Brien is the star of one of Australia’s most popular television programmes. He is also one of the world’s leading head and neck cancer specialists. But his life turned upside down when he was given six months to live after an enormous cancerous tumour was detected in his brain. He talks with great candour and courage about life death and the lessons we all need to learn.

Episode 2: Kim Young Se – April 18

Michael spends time in Seoul with one of the world’s greatest living designers. Kim Young Se has designed some of the best selling MP3 players, mobile phones, and high tech gadgets on the planet. He’s now working on a flying car. Treated like a rock star in Korea, he takes Michael around the Design Olympiad in Seoul.

Episode 3: Georgina Beyer – April 25
Michael travels to New Zealand to meet the first transexual woman in the world to be elected as a member of parliament. Georgina who grew up as plain George talks with great honesty about her personal turmoil and the extraordinary transformation that took her from being a sex worker in Sydney to election as an MP in what has traditionally been a socially conservative area of New Zealand.

Episode 5: Niki Caro – May 11
Michael meets the New Zealand director of academy award winning films like Whale Rider and North Country. She shows him her home as she tells him about the struggle facing female directors in Hollywood. She knows one failure would mean the effective end to her career.

Episode 4: Sun Ji Hai – May 2nd

Michael spends time with the biggest star of the biggest game in the biggest country on earth. Sun Ji Hai is by most people’s reckoning the most successful player in the history of Chinese football. He shows Michael a slice of his life as a successful professional footballer.

Episode 6: Lijia Zhang – May 18th
Michael meets the a woman who once worked in a model Chinese communist munitions factory in the 1980’s but who has now transformed her life to write a best-selling autobiography about her struggles with the system and herself. Lijia talks about the sexual revolution going on in her homeland and the astonishing speed which her and other lives have changed.

Episode 12: Suzie Moncrieff – Fashion Designer

Michael travels to New Zealand to visit the woman who has built a unique international fashion show attracting hundreds of entries from around the world. Michael is the international judge for the awards and along with the former New Zealand Prime Minister, Helen Clark is given the job of finding the international winner of the World of Wearable Art awards.