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Reflecting Earth. The Great Nature & Wildlife Summit 2019

The Workshop Event of WDR – West German Broadcasting Cologne and HMR International

In recent years the nature and wildlife genre has developed into an international, family-oriented bestseller through high-quality productions such as BLUE PLANET, THE WILD ANDES or NORWAY’S MAGICAL FJORDS. State-of-the-art camera techniques make it possible to experience the diversity and beauty of nature in all its facets, and new forms of storytelling allow ever more intensive insights into the lives of animals. Formats such as ERLEBNIS ERDE on ARD or TERRA X on ZDF successfully provide animal and nature film experiences in coveted prime time slots. What possibilities do advanced technologies offer, how will stories be told in the future, and what are the financing models for these international flagship programmes like? These questions and many more were discussed at the first Great Nature & Wildlife Summit in Cologne.


Natali Tesche-Ricciardi, Documentary filmmaker, Atlanta

10.15 – 11.00 hrs • Welcome

Christiane Hinz, Head of Documentaries/Culture and History, WDR – German Broadcasting Cologne

TERRA MATER – Discover the World and Conquer the Market
Walter Köhler, CEO, Terra Mater Factual Studios, Vienna

11.30 – 12.00 hrs • Coffee Break

12.00 – 12.45 hrs • Case Study

The Nature and Wildlife Film – New Forms of Storytelling
Thomas Behrend, Documentary filmmaker, Blue Planet Film, Hamburg
Dennis Wells, Director, taglicht media Film- & Fernsehproduktion, Cologne

12.45 – 13.30 hrs • Case Study

BLUE PLANET II as a Role Model – Success and Sustainability of the Series
Doug Hope, Head of Development, Producer & Director, BBC Studios, Bristol

13.30 – 14.30 hrs • Lunch Break

14.30 – 15.00 hrs • Talk

Shit Happens – Luck and Accidents During Shooting
Sigurd Tesche, Documentary filmmaker, Tesche Dokumentarfilm, Haan

15.00 – 15.45 hrs • Presentation

Wildlife 360° – New Media, Apps & Co.
Jörn Röver, Managing Director, Doclights, Hamburg

15.45 – 16.30 hrs • Case Study

DYNASTIES – A Narrative Experiment
Rupert Barrington, Series Producer, DYNASTIES, BBC Natural History Unit, Bristol
Klaus Kunde-Neimöth, Program Editor for Documentaries/Culture and History, WDR – West German Broadcasting Cologne

16.30 – 17.00 hrs • Coffee Break

17.00 – 18.00 hrs • Closing Panel

Reflecting Earth – Where Is Germany Headed?
Christian Baumeister, Filmmaker, Light & Shadow TV, Münster
Friederike Haedecke, Editor-In-Chief Terra X, ZDF, Mainz
Christiane Hinz, Head of Documentaries/Culture and History, WDR – German Broadcasting Cologne
Jörn Röver, Managing Director, Doclights, Hamburg

starting at 18.00 hrs • Networking

After the program WDR and Das Erste invite you to a preview of DYNASTIES, including a  Q & A and get together
with WDR chairman Tom Buhrow, ARD program director Volker Herres, and the DYNASTIES series producer from the BBC Natural History Unit, Bristol, Rupert Barrington. (invitation to follow)

Cinenova, Cinema 1, Herbrandstr. 11, 50825 Cologne


25. February 2019
10.00 – 21.00 hrs


Herbrandstr. 11
50825 Cologne