7:00am PT by Kimberly Nordyke
Lupita Nyong'o to Narrate Discovery Channel Wildlife Series 'Serengeti' (Exclusive)
Lupita Nyong'o has signed on to narrate Discovery Channel's upcoming series Serengeti, from American Idol creator Simon Fuller and directed by Emmy winner John Downer.
Serengeti, which is being dubbed as an "innovative series" by Discovery, features "unrivaled access to one of the most pristine and unspoiled corners of the African plains." The six-part series tells heartwarming stories of a cast of African wildlife over the course of a year and will showcase the dramatic moments that make each day of survival on the Serengeti a feat.
Nyong'o will narrate the series for Discovery Channel in the U.S. Serengeti is set to premiere later this year.
Fuller and Downer have worked together on the project for several years; their team is said to have used "innovative filming techniques in some of Africa's most treasured regions painting the ultimate portrait of survival."
The show also features original music as it showcases "Africa's unimaginable beauty [and] its equally unforgiving brutality." Viewers also will see the challenges that the animals face on a daily basis on the Serengeti, such as a lioness trying to provide for her small cubs after being exiled from her pride, and gain insight into how the animal experience isn't so different from the human experience.
"Simon and John have created a stunning and unique testament to a place that I have always loved," said Nyong'o, who is currently on the big screen in Jordan Peele's box office hit Us and won an Oscar in 2014 for 12 Years a Slave. "These beautiful creatures' stories are universal, and I am honored to help take the audience on their journey."
Serengeti is made by Fuller's XIX Entertainment and John Downer Productions (Earthflight, Spy in the Wild), which takes a more subjective than traditional approach to documentary filmmaking in order to get more up-close into the "emotional lives" of animals. The show was commissioned for BBC One by Tom McDonald, head of commissioning, natural history and specialist factual.
Serengeti is a co-presentation between Discovery and BBC and internationally distributed by BBC Studios. Emmy winner Fuller, who created the series, also serves as executive producer, along with Downer.
Said Fuller: "Lupita brings pure magic to Serengeti; her sensitivity and passion for nature shines through in every word she speaks. We are so proud to be working with such an extraordinary artist on this show that means so much to us."
Added Nancy Daniels, chief brand officer at Discovery and Factual: "We are thrilled and honored to have Lupita join this revolutionary new project from Simon and John. Her voice is sure to transport viewers to the plains of Serengeti highlighting their stories for generations."