May 20, 2013 11:16am PT by Philiana Ng
NBC Acquires 'Siberia' Drama Centered on Reality Contestants for Summer
NBC is bulking up its summer scripted slate.
The network announced Monday that it will air Siberia, a drama series centered on reality contestants competing in a remote location, beginning at 10 p.m. July 1.
“The concept of survival, when mysterious elements are at play, makes for a compelling show,” said Jeff Bader, president of program planning, strategy and research for NBC Entertainment. “We believe a scripted series that offers an insightful behind-the-scenes view of how a reality concept comes together — especially when things don’t go according to plan — will connect with our audience in a very satisfying way.”
“NBC immediately saw the potential in Siberia, and this acquisition truly exemplifies the quality of this groundbreaking series. We are excited to bring it to their viewers,” said executive producer and Sierra/Engine Television CEO Chris Philip.
Siberia takes place more than 100 years after a meteor hits the remote Siberian territory of Tunguska in 1908. Sixteen contestants descend on Tunguska not knowing the land's mysterious past. When a contestant is badly injured and no help arrives, the contestants realize that strange occurrences are not part of the reality show. With their safety threatened, the contestants are forced to work together to survive.
Siberia hails from Infinity Films with Sierra/Engine Television and Welldone Productions. Michael Ohove, Slava Jakovleff and Chris Philip serve as executive producers, with Matthew Arnold as creator.
Siberia marks the latest scripted push for summer as the Big Four broadcast networks look to keep the lights on following last year's disappointing unscripted slate. NBC has Camp and drama Crossing Lines, while CBS is going big with Under the Dome and the second run of Unforgettable.