Notre Dame Fire Documentary Lands at Fremantle

The hourlong special will feature footage shot by firefighters, Paris police and onlookers from the devastating April blaze.
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One of the first — but very likely not the only — longform reports on the recent fire at Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris may be making its way to viewers outside France.

Fremantle has secured international rights to Notre-Dame: In Flames, a one-hour documentary special that offers a "minute by minute account" of what happened before, during and after the devastating fire at the 12th century cathedral, one of Paris' most recognizable landmarks.

The documentary features footage taken by firefighters, Paris police and onlookers who filmed the blaze. It also features interviews with the priest and organist of Notre Dame, both of whom were inside the building when the fire began.

The fire broke out in the upper reaches of the cathedral in the early evening of April 15. The spire eventually collapsed in the blaze, and much of the roof was lost, but firefighters were able to save most of the building and the priceless artifacts it contains.

Its cause is still under investigation. Preliminary investigations pointed to an accident as the likely cause; a Paris police official told the Associated Press that an electrical short circuit could be at fault.

The French fashion industry has pledged more than $300 million to help rebuild Notre Dame. Disney, which used the cathedral as the setting for its 1996 animated feature The Hunchback of Notre Dame, has pledged $5 million, while Ubisoft has pledged $500,000 (Notre Dame is featured in the video game publisher's Assassin's Creed: Unity).

The documentary doesn't yet have an outlet attached in the U.S. Originally produced by STP Productions in France, it was re-versioned by TV Presse, a division of Fremantle's French production arm.