The History Channel announced five new weekly series that are currently in production for the network, to premiere in 2007 and 2008. This aggressive slate runs the gamut from Alaskan survival techniques, to world-traveling martial-arts adventures, to prehistoric dinosaur clashes, to the edge of the unknown in the universe.
Series premieres are:
-- Ice Road Truckers - a race against time on a thin sheet of ice
-- The Universe - charting the uncharted territory of the universe
-- Tougher in Alaska - the guts and smarts it takes to survive in that tough environment
-- Human Weapon - a different quest each week for a master of a martial-arts discipline
-- Jurassic Fight Club - new breed of dinosaurs makes a battlefield of the prehistoric world
Nancy Dubuc, Executive Vice President and General Manager, The History Channel, announced the projects, saying: "We want to harness the tremendous breadth and depth of history, to create energetic new directions for the network. We plan to build on the quality programming we are known for. By invigorating history, with these new series, we aim to create riveting content and powerful storytelling -- something people feel compelled to tune in and watch each week."
History.com will showcase each series with exclusive destination mini-sites featuring dynamic interactive broadband and short form content, games, video logs, timelines, and much more.
New series in Production:
ICE ROAD TRUCKERS
It's all about adventure ... and cash. And, incredible determination by a small group of indomitable men. Battling sub-zero temperatures, 24/7 work schedules, and a thinning road right beneath their wheels, the ice-road truckers are engaged in a gritty race against time. In the harsh winter of northernmost North America, miners rely on a tenacious group of long-haul truckers -- "top-drivers" -- to drive their rigs over hundreds of miles on ice roads cut across the surface of frozen lakes. Often the ice cannot support the heavy rig, and driver and cargo plunge through the ice, and sink. That is why these men live with one hand on the wheel and one hand on the door, at all times. They never know when they will need to react -- to everything. The raw material mined there is used in machines all around the world, and the miners depend on this lifeline for survival. Ultimately, their survival -- and that of the truckers themselves -- rests on the thinnest of ice. Dolores Gavin is The History Channel Executive Producer. (10 episodes).
From the planets to the stars and out to the edge of the unknown, history and science collide in this epic exploration of the Universe and its mysteries. It's a very old universe. Yet just 50 years since man first ventured into outer space, the heavens are yielding their greatest secrets. Robotic rovers give us eyes on the red rock of Mars. ... NASA probes slam into comets at hyperspeed. ... deep-space telescopes capture violent images of the birth of stars and their collapse into black holes. All have significantly changed the way we see ourselves. We wonder, Is there anywhere else out there that can support life? Using cutting-edge computer graphics, this series brings the universe down to earth to show what life would be like on other planets, and to imagine what kind of life forms might evolve in alien atmospheres. Episodes examine how discoveries were made and the scientists and explorers who dared to venture into the uncharted territory of the universe. Beth Dietrich Segarra is The History Channel Executive Producer. (13 episodes).
TOUGHER IN ALASKA
Everything is harder in Alaska, from the way you earn a living, to how you bury your dead. Tougher in Alaska explores the guts and self-reliance -- not to mention, ingenuity and technology -- it takes to survive the challenges of extreme cold and extreme isolation. In a land where severe weather, vast distances and rugged terrain shape everything about life, there's a long history of overcoming adversity and surviving the tough environment. Episodes will cover emergencies like the 1927 Nome diphtheria epidemic; how present-day structures like the pipeline are designed to withstand the potential fury of one of the most active seismic zones in the world; and how loggers must use helicopters to cope with remote locations. The series shows how -- both historically and today -- people have learned to overcome ... and live to tell the tale. Marc Etkind is The History Channel Executive Producer. (13 episodes).
Each of the martial arts -- whether Karate, Capoeira, Muay Thai, Kung Fu, or Greco-Roman wrestling -- is the unique product of a fascinating culture. Each is steeped in the history and mythology of a region. And each has a Master. Every week on Human Weapon, our hosts, Jason Chambers, a mixed martial artist and professional fighter, and Bill Duff, a former football player and wrestler, go on a quest to find the master of a different martial art. They venture to extreme and exotic places -- one week, seedy back streets of Bangkok to find Master Muay Thai fighter Suriya Ploenchit, and the next, sampling local delicacies such as steamed silkworms and snake blood en route to face off with the reigning Taekwondo champion in South Korea. Along the way they absorb a nation's unique history and traditions, and how it gave birth to its distinct form of combat. In a series of extreme tests, they must confront professionals in each fighting style and fight a master. Marc Etkind is The History Channel Executive Producer. (13 episodes).
JURASSIC FIGHT CLUB
They were the ultimate fighters -- prehistoric beasts who walked the earth millions of years ago. With cunning and strategy, they hunted their prey -- transforming the prehistoric world into a battlefield. Today, archaeologists are uncovering these battlefields -- and are gaining startling new insight into how quick thinking, maneuverability, and striking at the exact moment separated the weak from the strong. Blow by blow, each episode will dissect these battles, uncovering a predatory world far more calculated and complex than we originally thought. Episodes of Jurassic Fight Club will include Gang Killers, T-Rex Hunters, Deep-Sea Dinosaurs, and Armored Predators. Dolores Gavin is The History Channel Executive Producer. (10 episodes).