I have been informed by email that the Discovery Channel will be broadcasting an 11-part series starting March 25th called Planet Earth. Here is the intro paragraph I recieved:
"I wanted to let you know about, and to offer you content from one of the most highly anticipated shows to come from the Discovery Channel in quite some time. PLANET EARTH, which premieres March 25, is a groundbreaking 11-part documentary series featuring never before seen footage of some of the world’s most beautiful and remote places. Shot in HD with brand new camera technology, the series captures stunning views of the Earth and its wildlife, many of which are captured here for the first time ever. I'm reaching out to you because I thought that your readers would enjoy content from the show."
Here are links to a few very short video clips.
Bird of Paradise: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fDEBNoQs4Mc
Baboons in the Water: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hgiKWUHDFG0
Great White Shark Jump: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=USksVnUiaMI
"Award-winning actress and conservationist Sigourney Weaver will narrate PLANET EARTH, which premieres on the Discovery Channel Sunday, March 25, 2007 at 8 PM ET/PT. The PLANET EARTH series earned the top ratings in its time slot on the BBC when it premiered this year in the UK, and it’s sure to make waves here as well."
I don't know if this series will have any enviromentalist spin on it or not but I will be watching. If any of my readers have seen the British version, perhaps you could leave a comment or two. I might even do a review of a few episodes.
Update: I'm adding this info from the email:
"(Silver Spring, Md.) More than five years in the making, PLANET EARTH redefines blue-chip natural history filmmaking and continues the Discovery Channel mission to provide the highest quality programming in the world. The 11-part series will amaze viewers with never-before-seen animal behaviors, startling views of locations captured by cameras for the first time, and unprecedented high definition production techniques. Award-winning actress and conservationist Sigourney Weaver joins Discovery Channel as narrator. PLANET EARTH airs on consecutive Sundays from March 25 through April 22, 2007 on Discovery Channel and in high definition on Discovery HD Theater.
“PLANET EARTH is natural history for the 21st century,” says Discovery Channel Executive Vice President and General Manager Jane Root. “The sheer scope of the locations and brilliant clarity of the images, captured using revolutionary film techniques, will immerse viewers into a majestic world that only Discovery Channel can deliver.”
A technological marvel, PLANET EARTH employed new filmmaking methods to put wildlife into context with the epic landscape where it lives, for the first time. One of the new innovations is the Cineflex heligimble, a pioneering stabilization system that uses an extremely powerful camera lens attached to a helicopter, captured distant objects and creatures in close-up without disturbing the wildlife. The series also pushed the limits of high definition cameras to capture ultra low light images, deep sea marvels and incredible time lapse sequences."
(footnote, I'm probably wrong but the clip showing the Great White Shark Jump looks like an Orka to me, but I'm not very familiar with the two species.)