Sir David Attenborough: Why I’ve revived Planet Earth

Sir David Attenborough thinks the time is just right for a revival of his epic BBC1 wildlife series Planet Earth...

Ten years after Sir David Attenborough made his landmark natural history series Planet Earth, the 90-year-old broadcaster is back with a follow-up series Planet Earth II on BBC1 (Sunday 8.00pm).

The six-part series travels around the world to focus on a different wildlife habitat each week, beginning with islands and continuing with mountains, jungles, deserts, grasslands and cities. Here, Sir David tells us much more…

Why did you think the time was right to make a new Planet Earth series?
“The technical advances in film-making in the past decade have been enormous. The sort of shots we got in the new Planet Earth we just couldn’t have got 10 years ago.”

Did it bring back a lot of memories for you?
“In the new series, they film indri lemurs in Madagascar which I first filmed in the 1960s. We were pretty proud of the footage we got back then, but when I saw the lemur sequence in this new series, I realised how inadequate we were. The camera gets so close to them, it’s unbelievable.”

Was there any animal behaviour you hadn’t seen before?
“They have remarkable footage of racer snakes chasing after newly hatched marine iguanas as they make their way to the sea in the Galapagos. I have never seen that happen and I have been to the Galapagos at least five times!”

planet earth, snow leopard

The rarely seen snow leopard is captured by the cameras on Planet Earth ll

Do you have a favourite sequence in the new series?
“There is a marvellous and very moving sequence of a lone snow leopard padding through the vast, beautiful landscape in the Himalayas. It really captures how lonely a snow leopard’s life is. And I am full of admiration because the chances of getting snow leopards on film are so remote.”

Planet Earth II premieres on BBC1, Sunday, November 6, 8.00pm

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