Discovery Channel to film Mount Everest for live TV shows and peak jump
Discovery Channel is set to film nearly a week of live TV broadcasts from Mount Everest’s Base Camp in the Himalayas. The programming will also follow climber Joby Ogwyn as he makes his way to the peak, before leaping from the summit in a wing suit fitted with onboard cameras.
Update (22 April 2014): Discovery Channel has now cancelled the live shows and peak jump following the tragic deaths of 13 people in an avalanche on Everest on 18 April.
“These nightly live programmes will give viewers a chance to see what it’s like to actually be at Everest Base Camp – not just for Joby, but for all those who contribute to Everest’s unique culture,” said Eileen O'Neill, Group President at Discovery, Science and Velocity Networks.
“We’re incredibly excited to show viewers from around the globe what it’s like to be there and to get a closer look at something that has never before been done.”
Discovery’s broadcast hosts will start the ascent to Everest Base Camp this week. Everest: Live From Base Camp will start on 5 May and will comprise interviews with Sherpas, climbers and medics, alongside regular analysis of local weather patterns that will ultimately decide whether Ogwyn’s planned jump can actually go ahead on 11 May.
The Discovery series is just the latest production to focus on the world’s tallest mountain. Last year, the New Zealand docudrama Beyond the Edge marked the 50th anniversary of the historic 1953 ascent of Everest by Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay. The film largely doubled New Zealand’s Tasman Glacier for the Himalayas, but also used footage filmed on an actual ascent of Everest.
These nightly live programmes will give viewers a chance to see what it’s like to actually be at Everest Base Camp.
Eileen O'Neill, Group President at Discovery, Science and Velocity Networks
Filmmaker Doug Liman has reportedly been planning a feature telling the story of George Mallory’s ill-fated 1924 attempt to climb Everest, but this appears to have been delayed due to Baltasar Kormakur’s feature film Everest (above) going into production more quickly.
Kormakur’s movie will tell a more contemporary story of a horrific day in 1996 when a rogue storm resulted in the tragic deaths of eight climbers across separate expeditions. Limited filming took place in Nepal, but the Italian Dolomites are largely doubling for Everest itself.
(Photo: Universal Pictures)
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