Cluzaud, Perrin re-team for new docu series

Rolling off “Oceans,” France’s overseas 2010 box office champ, Gallic filmmakers Jacques Cluzaud and Jacques Perrin (“Winged Migration”) have re-teamed on “Kingdom of the Oceans,” an $80 million, four-part documentary series.

Repped by Pathe Intl., which has a stand at Mip TV for the first time, “Kingdom of the Oceans” uses exclusive footage shot during the lensing of “Oceans.”

Cluzaud and Perrin followed about 100 species across five oceans using the latest underwater technologies.

“We had two HD cameras and two divers who were able to spend three hours at a time underwater,” Perrin told Variety. “That allowed us to move at the speed of the marine life that crisscrosses the oceans, and experience life from their perspective.”

Docu’s first episode, “Into the Blue” follows 24 different marine mammals, from the Tuna to the Mola Mola, as they move across the oceans; the second part, “Life on the Reef,” turns on the Kelp forestslocated inNew Caledonia, which is known as the most productive and dynamic ecosystems on Earth. “Inside those vegetation, there a fairy-like universe where you can observe a wide variety of seals playing and dancing with great agility and birds that you see nowhere else.” The third episode, “Life on the Reef” looks at a wide range offishes and invertebrates found bythe Coral Reef, which Perrin says hosts adiverse communities of sea creatures. The last part of the series, “Returning to the Sea” which analyses the evolution of mammals.

Next up, Perrin said he’s developing “The Seasons,” a feature film centering on pirates of African oceans.

While “Oceans” was mostly contemplative, the spinoff series has a more educational approach and features commentary penned by oceanographer Francois Sarano and science journo Stephane Durand. It’s produced by Perrin’s Paris-based Galatee Films, in association with Pathe.

“Kingdom” was pre-bought by French pubcaster France 2 and Franco-German net Arte, and was pre-sold to Germany’s Universum.

“We were looking to pursue our collaboration with Jacques Perrin and Jacques Cluzaud beyond ‘Oceans’ and thought it would make perfect sense to commercialize this documentary series,” said Muriel Sauzay, Pathe’s topper of international sales.

(John Hopewell in Madrid contributed to this report.)

Filed Under:

Follow @Variety on Twitter for breaking news, reviews and more