Channel 5 onboard first BBC Earth original

The UK’s Channel 5 and BBC Worldwide have co-commissioned an extreme weather series that will be the first original for new thematic network BBC Earth.

Julie SwanstonWeather Terror is a six-part series that debuts this Friday on Channel 5 at 8pm. Internationally (excluding the UK and Ireland), the BBC’s commercial arm has rights and is rolling it out on the BBC Earth channel around the world as Extreme Weather: The Survivors.

BBC Earth has been on the hunt for original programming since launching as one of three core BBCWW international channels brands – the others being premium content-focused BBC First and make-skewed BBC Brit.

The channel is currently in Poland, the Nordic region, Hungary, Romania, Slovenia and Turkey and further launches will follow this year.

Weather Terror follows travellers’ stories of extreme weather conditions, using the personal footage recorded by the survivors.

Endemol Shine Group-owned DSP (Darlow Smithson Productions) is attached to produce, with company managing director Emily Dalton executive producing alongside BBC Earth’s Kirsty Hanson.

BBC Earth hired Hanson earlier this year to ‘“adrenalin-fuelled, fast paced and visceral adventure series that have British talent at their centre”.

“This series is a great example of the compelling, fast-paced television that we’re looking for in new commissions for BBC Earth – visceral adventure, exceptional characters and importantly a strong global appeal,” said Julie Swanston, VP, original commissioning for BBC Earth (pictured).

“These vivid stories take us Brits into the heart of the storm, and it’s terrifying,” added Channel commissioning editor, factual Guy Davies. “I’m delighted that Channel 5 and BBC Worldwide combined to make this series so dramatic and exciting.”