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The show, which hails from Emmy winners Simon Fuller and John Downer, will take viewers to the vast, nearly untouched plains of Tanzania. The six-part series highlights the majestic animals and their day-to-day lives living together.
Created and produced by Fuller (American Idol, So You Think You Can Dance) and directed and produced by wildlife filmmaker Downer (Penguin: Spy in The Huddle), the series is said to give unrivaled access to one of the most pristine and unspoiled corners of Africa as it follows the heartwarming stories of a cast of African wildlife, including lions, zebras, baboons and cheetahs, over the course of a year, showcasing the dramatic moments that make each day of survival on the Serengeti a feat. Watch the trailer above.
“The Serengeti National Park is a place that although I have never visited is very close to my home,” Nyong’o said. “Being part of this series, Serengeti has offered me a chance to visit these animals in a very personal way. In watching the incredible footage captured by the team in the field, I was able to really spend time with each animal in an intimate fashion — understanding their relationships, struggles, fears and even their desires. Spending this kind of time with them, I was able to see how the experiences of these animals aren’t too far away from ours; they want similar things: to survive and thrive.”
Collaborating for the first time, Fuller and Downer worked together on Serengeti for several years. Using a photographic and highly stylistic approach, their team employed innovative filming techniques in some of Africa’s most treasured regions, painting the ultimate portrait of survival in Serengeti.
“Of all the shows I have created or worked on, nothing compares to Serengeti,” Fuller said. “The incredible animals seen in the series are not so different from us humans, after all. We all share a common goal of searching for happiness, our need to be loved by our families and ultimately, survival. The purity and simplicity of these animals’ lives have inspired me in so many profound ways. The genius of director John Downer, capturing the most personal and extraordinary moments from these beautiful animals’ lives, is truly awe-inspiring. I am also proud to have Discovery as the best possible partner for such an important television event. I truly believe that the more empathy and respect humans show to our fellow non-human living and breathing individuals, the better our planet and our lives will be, and I hope that’s what audiences take away from the series later this summer.”
The show is set to premiere at 8 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 4, and will debut new episodes subsequent Sundays. It also will be available on Discovery Go, and will premiere in Spanish at 8 p.m. Aug. 4 on Discovery en Español and air every Sunday at the same time.
The show also features original music by Will Gregory with vocals by artists such as Lola Lennox.
Serengeti is made by XIX Entertainment and John Downer Productions and was commissioned for BBC TV by Tom McDonald. Nancy Daniels and Howard Swartz serve as executive producers for Discovery Channel.
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