[03/21/11 - 10:32 AM]
Current TV Kicks Off a Different Take on Earth Day Programming With "Earth Fights Back" Weekend
Said lineup includes "Dangerous Planet," a 13-episode series which looks at the most extreme weather on earth.

[via press release from Current TV]


Sam Branson To Host Original Special "Man Versus Earth," Premiering on Earth Day, Friday, April 22 at 9:00 PM, ET/PT

"Dangerous Planet," an Original Documentary Series, Will Make Its U.S Debut in The Weekend Marathon Beginning April 22 at 7:00 PM, ET/PT

NEW YORK, March 21, 2011 - As society grapples with recent devastating natural events and their political, moral and economic implications, Current TV is unveiling a different perspective on the unpredictable and often powerful forces of nature by observing Earth Day with an informative, thought-provoking look at our beautiful -- and sometimes volatile - planet via the Network's Earth Fights Back weekend. Current TV will kick things off with the premiere of an original one-hour special "Man Versus Earth," featuring host and explorer Sam Branson, son of Virgin Group founder, Sir Richard Branson, on Earth Day, Friday, April 22 at 9:00 PM, ET/PT. In what has been touted as one of the snowiest years in decades, this special takes Sam to the front lines of man's struggle with the elements, in this case, snow - where we see Sam immersed in the ins-and-outs of avalanche control as well as getting a first hand experience of what it feels like to be buried alive in snow.

In addition, Current TV will present the US television debut of the one-hour documentary series, "Dangerous Planet," beginning on Earth Day, Friday April 22nd at 7:00 PM, ET/PT. The 13-episode series, which looks at the most extreme weather on earth - including volcanoes, earthquakes, tsunamis to hurricanes -- will be marathoned throughout Earth Fights Back weekend along with encore presentations of "Man Versus Earth."

"Civilization seems to be experiencing the power of nature's impact more and more, and it seems we keep seeing examples of the tragic destruction our environment can sometimes unleash. We've also seen dramatic shifts in weather patterns: for example, this winter tested our patience and our public service resources with the snowiest weather in 50 years. As our world becomes more developed, the impact of natural disasters seems to escalate, and it's raising lots of questions that we hope this programming will answer," said James Dubern, Current TV's Senior Vice President of Programming. "By providing an inside look at the Earth's forces in a fact-based, scientific way, we aim to shine a light on the many untold stories of man's battle against the elements in a both provocative and entertaining way."

In "Man Versus Earth," Sam Branson hosts and actively explores the snowiest regions in the U.S. Sam is no stranger to environmental issues having previously endured sub-zero temperatures while raising awareness of the effects of global warming in the Arctic.

In this one-hour special, Sam fights side by side with the weather warriors on the frontline of the battle between man and the elements. We follow Sam as he meets the experts, scientists and on-the-ground workers whose job it is to protect us against the very real threat of extreme snowfall. Along the way, Sam meets the men who fire army tanks at mountain-sides to set off avalanches, learns how to rescue a body trapped inside an avalanche and is caught unaware when a team of snowmobilers take him on an emotional tour to the location in the Rockies where they have lost several friends to avalanches. In a chilling, adrenaline-soaked climax, Sam is buried alive by a group of snow scientists in order to road test the latest in avalanche survival equipment, the AvaLung - but after an hour of surviving in his snow coffin, is it much more than he bargained for? "Man Versus. Earth" was produced for Current TV by Zig Zag Productions in Association with Current Sponge.

"Dangerous Planet" is a docu-series that shows what happens when natural forces come into conflict with humans, with sometimes devastating results. Using a mixture of rare archive footage and dramatic 3D animated reconstructions, each episode of this fascinating series focuses on one type of natural disaster, giving examples of some of the largest or most devastating in recent years - from volcanoes, earthquakes, cyclones, typhoons and avalanches, to those that we humans may have more of a hand in, such as forest fires and landslides.

The disasters featured have occurred over 100 years and across all areas of the globe. The levels of devastation are phenomenal - one of the worst avalanches of all time, occurred in December 1916, when 10,000 people were killed in the Italian-Austrian Alps. Much more recently, on Boxing Day 2005, a giant tsunami caused by a massive undersea earthquake hit South East Asia - devastating the landscape, and killing an estimated 229, 866 people.

However - this series is not solely about the numbers that have been killed. Some of these phenomena are just simply remarkable, such as in 1896 a giant waterspout (a tornado over water) was sighted offshore from Massachusetts, the most perfect that any sailor had seen. Although powerful, because of its location, did not pose a threat.

In many situations, it is the landscape that bears the full force of the blow, changing it forever. The largest eruption in North American history occurred in 1912, when Mount Kaimai transformed an Alaskan valley into a 50 mile square moonscape which has since been used for astronauts for training. As the area was so desolate, no one was killed, however, the landscape serves as a powerful reminder of the force of these natural disasters, proving that we are now and always have been at the mercy of the elements. The series is Executive Produced by Philip Nugu.

The 13 episodes will air throughout the weekend on Current TV.


Current TV is an award-winning media company committed to exploring the world's most important, interesting and entertaining stories. With a fully integrated television and online platform, Current connects its audience with what's going on in their world through its blend of bold and unique original and acquired productions. Founded in 2005 by Al Gore and Joel Hyatt, Current is available in the U.S., U.K., Italy and Ireland in 74 million households through distribution partners Comcast (Channel 107 nationwide); Time Warner (nationwide); DirecTV (Channel 358 nationwide); Dish Network (Channel 196 nationwide); Verizon; AT&T; BSkyB (Channel 183); Virgin Media (Channel 155) and Sky Italia (Channel 130). More information is available at www.current.com.

  [march 2011]  


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