The BBC has long been known for creating hard-hitting Nature documentaries that have brought viewers closer than they could ever imagine to some of the world’s rarest wildlife. Often, synonymous with these successful Nature series, the voice of Sir David Attenborough has added an extra layer of quality to the production.
Now, 16 years on from the release of The Blue Planet, the BBC has announced the release of the follow-up series, Blue Planet II. With a promise to go further and deeper than any other underwater documentary has before, the use of cutting-edge technology has allowed the cameramen to peer into the intimate lives of elusive marine animals.
One filming innovation sees a suction camera being fitted to the back of an orca. These filming techniques have brought the BBC camera team around the world – as the Natural History Unit spent four years filming off every continent and in every ocean for the series.
With so much change happening in the oceans – mainly changes for the worst – it is now more important than ever to highlight the importance of the fragile life that resides below the waves.
“I am truly thrilled to be joining this new exploration of the underwater worlds which cover most of our planet, yet are still its least known,” Sir David told the BBC. Indeed, with the recent release of Planet Earth II, there is hot anticipation to see just what the BBC can come up with this time in terms of groundbreaking content.
James Honeyborne, the series’ executive producer, told the BBC: “The oceans are the most exciting place to be right now, because new scientific discoveries have given us a new perspective of life beneath the waves.
“Blue Planet II is taking its cue from these breakthroughs, unveiling unbelievable new places, extraordinary new behaviours and remarkable new creatures. Showing a contemporary portrait of marine life, it will provide a timely reminder that this is a critical moment for the health of the world’s oceans.”
Among the exciting footage, recent discoveries have been caught on camera, including a tuskfish that uses tools, and a new species of crab with a hairy chest.
Through revolutionary filming techniques, the BBC crew said that they had caught unusual examples of marine behaviour on camera. Notable captures are coral groupers with sophisticated hunting techniques, and a giant trevally that catches birds in flight.
The exploration of new underwater landscapes, at the depths of the ocean, and into some of the most extreme habitats, are set to reveal a documentary like never before.