Pay cable network Showtime has ordered a multi-episode documentary series about climate change called “Years Of Living Dangerously” for 2013, and to say it has star power would be something of an understatement. Showtime will air six to eight one-hour editions of the documentary, which features a slew of heavy hitters from the world of journalism and entertainment.
On the journalism side, the series will be produced by “60 Minutes” veterans Joel Bach and David Gelber. Also joining them will be reports from MSNBC host Chris Hayes and New York Times columnists Thomas Friedman, Nicholas Kristof and Mark Bittman.
On the celebrity front the series has filmmaker James Cameron, producer Jerry Weintraub and former California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger as executive producers. Matt Damon, Don Cheadle, Edward Norton and Alec Baldwin will all appear as first-person narrators, with more names to come.
“We’ll make it exciting,” said Cameron in a statement. “We’ll make it investigative. We’ll bring people the truth. And people are always hungry for the truth.”
More information, below.
SHOWTIME® TO AIR “YEARS OF LIVING DANGEROUSLY,”
A MULTI-EPISODE DOCUMENTARY SERIES ON CLIMATE CHANGE
Event Series To Be Executive Produced By James Cameron, Jerry Weintraub, Arnold Schwarzenegger,
“60 Minutes®” Vets Joel Bach & David Gelber, And Climate Expert Daniel Abbasi
LOS ANGELES, CA (December 03, 2012) – SHOWTIME will explore the human impact of climate change in the documentary event series YEARS OF LIVING DANGEROUSLY. This first-of-its-kind series is a collaboration between some of Hollywood’s biggest actors and producers, along with the country’s leading news journalists, who will report on first-person accounts of those affected by – and seeking solutions to – global warming. The project is executive produced by James Cameron, Jerry Weintraub, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, along with Emmy®-winning 60 Minutes producers Joel Bach and David Gelber, and climate expert Daniel Abbasi. Film and television stars such as Matt Damon, Don Cheadle and Alec Baldwin will participate as first-person narrators on the ground. Also expected to join the project is actor Edward Norton, with more names to be announced soon. Reporting from the field is a dream team of New York Times journalists including three-time Pulitzer Prize winner Thomas Friedman, two-time Pulitzer Prize winner Nicholas Kristof, as well as renowned columnist Mark Bittman, and MSNBC host and political commentator Chris Hayes, among others. The announcement was made today by David Nevins, President of Entertainment for Showtime Networks Inc. Extensive in both scale and scope, YEARS OF LIVING DANGEROUSLY will unfold over six to eight, one-hour episodes and is scheduled to air in 2013.
“The recent devastation on the East Coast is a tragic reminder of the direct link between our daily lives and climate change,” said Nevins. “This series presents a unique opportunity to combine the large-scale filmmaking styles of James Cameron, Jerry Weintraub and Arnold Schwarzenegger — arguably some of Hollywood’s biggest movie makers — with the hard-hitting, intimate journalism of 60 Minutes veterans Joel Bach and David Gelber. I believe this combination will make for a thought-provoking television event.”
“We’ll make it exciting,” said Cameron. “We’ll make it investigative. We’ll bring people the truth. And people are always hungry for the truth.”
YEARS OF LIVING DANGEROUSLY will combine the epic and passionate styles of Hollywood’s top filmmakers with Bach and Gelber’s reporting expertise to reveal critical stories of heartbreak, hope and heroism as the race to save the planet continues.
Oscar® winner Cameron has been a long-time, vocal environmental advocate. His latest record-breaking sci-fi blockbuster Avatar, nominated for nine Academy Awards®, includes themes of civilization’s detrimental treatment of the planet. Weintraub, former chairman and CEO of United Artists and famed producer of the Ocean’s 11 franchise and other box-office hits, is well known for his philanthropic efforts on behalf of a wide variety of causes. Former California Governor Schwarzenegger is an active leader on environmental issues. As governor, he enacted the nation’s largest greenhouse gas emissions trading program. Since leaving office, he has continued to promote state and local clean energy efforts through his R20: Regions of Climate Action, and he recently announced plans to establish the USC Schwarzenegger Institute for State and Global Policy, devoted to seeking bipartisan solutions to environmental, economic, and other public policy issues. He will chair the think-tank’s board and also hold a public policy professorship at the school.
Of Gelber’s twenty-five years at 60 Minutes, he served as Ed Bradley’s producer for two decades, during which he won every major journalism award, including a Peabody, two DuPonts and eight Emmy Awards. During Bach’s seven-year tenure at 60 Minutes, he produced pieces for Bradley, Scott Pelley, Steve Kroft and Leslie Stahl. He is the recipient of three Emmy Awards. Abbasi, the founder of GameChange Capital, a venture capital firm funding low-carbon solutions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, will work with the series’ investigative team to identify and spotlight the most promising ways to decelerate climate change. Abbasi serves on the governing body of the U.S. National Climate Assessment and previously served as an appointee in the Clinton Administration’s Environmental Protection Agency.
Additionally, the series is also executive produced by Maria Wilhelm (Avatar Alliance Foundation). Seven-time Emmy winner Solly Granatstein (60 Minutes and Rock Center with Brian Williams) acts as co-executive producer, and Dr. Joseph Romm (ClimateProgress.org) serves as the Technical Advisor.
Showtime Networks Inc. (SNI), a wholly-owned subsidiary of CBS Corporation, owns and operates the premium television networks SHOWTIME®, THE MOVIE CHANNEL™ and FLIX®, as well as the multiplex channels SHOWTIME 2™, SHOWTIME® SHOWCASE, SHOWTIME EXTREME®, SHOWTIME BEYOND®, SHOWTIME NEXT®, SHOWTIME WOMEN®, SHOWTIME FAMILY ZONE® and THE MOVIE CHANNEL™ XTRA. SNI also offers SHOWTIME HD™, THE MOVIE CHANNEL™ HD, SHOWTIME ON DEMAND® and THE MOVIE CHANNEL™ ON DEMAND, and the network’s authentication service SHOWTIME ANYTIME®. SNI also manages Smithsonian Networks, a joint venture between SNI and the Smithsonian Institution, which offers Smithsonian Channel™. All SNI feeds provide enhanced sound using Dolby Digital 5.1. SNI markets and distributes sports and entertainment events for exhibition to subscribers on a pay-per-view basis through SHOWTIME PPV®.