NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC CHANNEL, IMAGINE ENTERTAINMENT, AND RADICALMEDIA REDEFINE TELEVISION STORYTELLING WITH GLOBAL EVENT SERIES, MARS, BEGINNING NOVEMBER 14
Executive Produced by Brian Grazer and Ron Howard and Starring Edmonton’s Ben Cotton, the Epic Six-Part Series Showcases the Modern Scientific Space Revolution, While Envisioning Humankind’s First Attempt to Colonize MARS
MARS’ Worldwide Premiere Coincides with National Geographic Channel’s Global Rebrand and New Tagline, “Further”
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TORONTO, November 3, 2016 – Of all the planets in the solar system, none have captured imaginations, engaged the top minds in science, and infiltrated pop culture like Mars. Now, National Geographic, Academy Award® and Emmy®-winning producers Brian Grazer, Ron Howard, and Michael Rosenberg of Imagine Entertainment, Academy Award-nominated and Emmy-winning producer Justin Wilkes, Academy Award and Emmy-winning producers Jon Kamen and Dave O’Connor of RadicalMedia, and visionary Mexican filmmaker Everardo Gout, have joined forces to launch viewers farther into outer space than ever before with the global event series MARS, premiering Monday, Nov. 14 at 9 p.m. ET on National Geographic Channel.
Set both in the future and in the present day, MARS redefines television storytelling by combining feature film-quality scripted drama and visual effects with best-in-class documentary sequences to drive forward a cohesive, edge-of-your-seat story of mankind’s thrilling quest to colonize the red planet. Viewers can watch the out-of-this-world trailers and explore the interactive microsite featuring a digital companion prequel series, and an extensive digital virtual reality experience.
Filmed in Budapest and Morocco, the epic six-part global event series tells the inspiring story from the vantage point of a fictitious crewed mission to Mars in 2033. The scripted portion focuses on Earth’s first crewed mission to Mars aboard the spacecraft Daedalus. Its maiden voyage in 2033 is crewed by a carefully selected international team of six uniquely qualified astronauts: American mission commander Ben Sawyer (Edmonton’s Ben Cotton, Van Helsing), Korean-American mission pilot Hana Seung (singer Jihae), Spanish hydrologist and geochemist Javier Delgado (Alberto Ammann, Narcos), French mission physician and biochemist Amelie Durand (Clementine Poidatz, Marie Antoinette), Nigerian mechanical engineer and roboticist Robert Foucault (Sammi Rotibi, Django Unchained), and Russian exobiologist and geologist Marta Kamen (Anamaria Marinca, Fury). Back on Earth, the Mars Mission Corporation (MMC) control team based in London includes Hana Seung’s twin sister and capsule communicator Joon Seung (also played by Jihae), and French CEO of the MMC, Ed Grann (Olivier Martinez, S.W.A.T).
MARS truly brings together all of the world’s leading minds in a way never before accomplished – the equivalent to the world’s largest TED Talk with the most fascinating experts in the field.
Those interviewed on camera for the series include the following:
- Charles Bolden, Administrator, Former Astronaut, NASA
- Neil deGrasse Tyson, Director, Hayden Planetarium
- Peter Diamandis, Chairman and CEO, XPRIZE Foundation
- David Dinges, Director, Unit for Experimental Psychiatry, University of Pennsylvania
- Casey Dreier, Director of Space Policy, The Planetary Society
- Ann Druyan, Creative Director, Voyager Interstellar Mission, NASA
- Charles Elachi, Director, LPL (Ret.)
- Jim Green, Division Director, Planetary Science, NASA
- John Grunsfeld, Associate Administrator, Former Astronaut, NASA
- Jennifer Heldmann, Planetary Scientist, NASA
- Jedidah Isler, award-winning astrophysicist; emerging Explorer, National Geographic
- Thomas Kalil, Deputy Director, White House Office of Science and Technology
- Roger Launius, Smithsonian Institution
- John Logsdon, Founder, Space Policy Institute, George Washington University
- James Lovell, Former NASA Astronaut, Apollo 13 Commander
- Elon Musk, CEO SpaceX
- Stephen Petranek, author, “How We’ll Live on Mars”
- Mary Roach, author, “Packing for Mars”
- Jennifer Trosper, Mars 2020 Mission Manager, JPL
- Andy Weir, author, “The Martian”
- Robert Zubrin, President, The Mars Society
The worldwide premiere of MARS coincides with the multi-platform global rebrand of National Geographic, which includes dropping the word “Channel” from its broadcast network, and introducing the brand-defining tagline, “Further”. In the debut episode, (Monday, Nov. 14 at 9 p.m. ET/PT) the year is 2033, and the first human mission to Mars enters the red planet’s atmosphere. However, the crew faces a life-threatening emergency when their ship’s landing system goes offline. The crew’s commander risks his life to fix the problem as mission control monitors back on Earth. In the present-day documentary, SpaceX attempts to land the world’s first reusable rocket in order to pioneer the critical technology that will help humans reach Mars.
For information about future episodes of MARS click here.
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About Corus Entertainment Inc.
Corus Entertainment Inc. (TSX: CJR.B) is a leading media and content company that creates and delivers high quality brands and content across platforms for audiences around the world. The company’s portfolio of multimedia offerings encompasses 45 specialty television services, 39 radio stations, 15 conventional television stations, a global content business, digital assets, live events, children’s book publishing, animation software, technology and media services. Corus’ roster of premium brands includes Global Television, W Network, OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network Canada, HGTV Canada, Food Network Canada, HISTORY®, Showcase, National Geographic Channel, Q107, CKNW, Fresh Radio, Disney Channel Canada, YTV and Nickelodeon Canada. Visit Corus at www.corusent.com.
About National Geographic Channels
The National Geographic Channels (The Channels) form the television and production arm of National Geographic Partners, a joint venture between 21st Century Fox and the National Geographic Society. As a global leader in premium science, adventure and exploration programming, the Channels include: National Geographic Channel (NGC), Nat Geo WILD, Nat Geo People and Nat Geo MUNDO. Additionally, the Channels also run the in-house television production unit, National Geographic Studios. The Channels contribute to the National Geographic Society’s commitment to exploration, conservation and education with entertaining, innovative programming from A-level talent around the world, and with profits that help support the society’s mission. Globally, NGC is available in more than 440 million homes in 171 countries and 45 languages, and Nat Geo WILD is available in 131 countries and 38 languages. National Geographic Partners is also a leader in social media, with a fan base of 250 million people across all of its social pages. NGC contributes over 55 million social media fans globally on Facebook alone.
Imagine Entertainment was founded in 1986 by Ron Howard and Brian Grazer to create independently produced feature films, television programs and other original programming. Imagine Entertainment has been honored with more than 60 prestigious awards, including 10 Academy Awards and 40 Emmy awards. Past productions include Academy Award Best Picture winner “A Beautiful Mind,” as well as “Apollo 13,” “American Gangster,” “The Da Vinci Code,” “8 Mile,” “Liar, Liar,” “Backdraft” and “Parenthood,” to name a few. Upcoming films include “Inferno,” the third installment of the Dan Brown franchise; “American Made,” starring Tom Cruise; and “The Beatles: 8 Days a Week – The Touring Years,” a documentary about The Beatles. Current television productions include Fox’s “Empire,” “Shots Fired!” and “24: Legacy,” as well as National Geographic Channel’s Breakthrough and Genius series. Past television productions include NBC’s “Parenthood,” NBC’s “Friday Night Lights,” Fox’s “24” and “24: Live Another Day” and Fox’s and Netflix’s “Arrested Development,” as well as HBO’s “From the Earth to the Moon,” for which Howard and Grazer won the Emmy for Outstanding Mini-Series. Ron Howard and Brian Grazer began their collaboration in 1985 with the hit comedies “Night Shift” and “Splash.”
Since 1993, RadicalMedia has produced numerous films and television programs that tell nuanced, multifaceted stories, including the Emmy-winning, Academy- and Grammy-nominated documentary, What Happened, Miss Simone? and the critically acclaimed Keith Richards: Under the Influence, both for Netflix; the Academy Award and Spirit Award-winning documentary, The Fog of War; Grammy Award-winning Concert for George; Paul Simon’s Graceland Journey: Under African Skies, Joe Berlinger’s Emmy Award-winning documentary examining the making of the groundbreaking and controversial Paul Simon record Graceland; The Ron Howard helmed Jay-Z documentary, Made In America, Joe Berlinger’s Spirit Award-winning documentary, Metallica: Some Kind of Monster, the Academy Award and multiple Emmy-nominated Paradise Lost 3: Purgatory and Whitey: The US vs. James J. Bulger. Additional Television credits include, Oprah’s Master Class, Iconoclasts, David Blaine: Real or Magic, the Emmy-winning Park Bench with Steve Buscemi, Judgement Day: Prison or Parole? for Investigation Discovery, and the highly anticipated October 2016 documentary, Hamilton’s America about Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Tony, Grammy and Pulitzer Prize-winning Broadway megahit.
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