Travel Channel has announced pilot orders for eight new projects, including one based around ABC correspondent Nick Watt, one that mixes ancestry and adventure, and one about investment capitalists.
“Watt’s World,” (working title) which is produced by Lincoln Square Productions, follows Scottish journalist Watt on his assignments, while “Find My Past” (working title) from Lion TV concentrates on regular Americans looking into their genealogy. Eyeworks USA’s “Adventure Capitalists” focuses on business investors considering flashy destinations around the country.
The pilot orders, which were announced at Travel Channel parent company Scripps Networks Interactive’s Upfront press breakfast at Alice Tully Hall in New York City, come a few weeks after the cabler announced several new series orders — the first projects to be announced under new president Shannon O’Neill.
“This has been an exciting time where we’ve discovered a treasure trove of compelling storytellers and inspirational talent,” Ross Babbit, Travel Channel SVP Programming & Development said about the pilots. “We’re excited to move ahead with our new development slate that not only spotlights a fresh group of authentic talent and experts in global locations, but also delivers an immersive travel entertainment experience.”
The full development slate is below:
“Adventure Capitalists” (wt) follows a team of three investors, as they travel across the country to survey the hottest destinations. Once there, these savvy business experts look to invest in local hotels, restaurants and shops. Three businesses pitch the team, but only one is chosen. The half-hour pilot is produced by Eyeworks USA.
“Breaking Borders” (wt) pairs Peabody Award-winning correspondent Mariana van Zeller with celebrated chef Michael Voltaggio as they travel into well-known conflict zones, to uncover and elevate the personal stories, perspectives and rich cultures from both sides of the conflict. Van Zeller and Voltaggio share a simple, but unique goal: to gather people from both sides of the conflict for an amazing meal and an animated discussion, where on a human level, they might just find some common ground. The one-hour pilot is produced by MY Tupelo Entertainment.
“Find My Past” (wt) is a hosted series that follows Americans on a journey to breathtaking locations throughout the world as they uncover their very personal connection to history’s most extraordinary events. Traveling across the world from one incredible location to another, each individual will get a chance to walk in their ancestors’ footsteps. By journey’s end, everything is revealed, and the historical impact of their ancestors’ lives will come into clear and striking focus. The half-hour pilot is produced by Lion TV.
“Guiding Alaska” (wt) features an ensemble cast who takes viewers on an excursion to one of Alaska’s most elite and remote wilderness resorts. Located 300 miles from civilization, the world famous Tikchik Lodge and its experienced and eccentric crew, welcome the challenge of serving and satisfying its guests with exhilarating outdoor adventures and world-class cuisine. This is Alaska, where contending with the dynamic, untamed and at times almost insurmountable wilderness goes hand in hand. The one-hour pilot is produced by Orion Entertainment.
“Metropolis” (wt) spotlights iconic cities around the world with the goal of reimagining everything travelers know about them. From hidden secrets to signature foods to cultural idiosyncrasies, viewers are granted extraordinary access to each location through stunning 3D graphics and stylized re-enactments. The one-hour pilot is produced by Nutopia.
“Nigel’s Last Resort” (wt) follows luxury resort developer Nigel Franklyn as he explores the world’s most extreme and unique hot spots, discovering all the outlandish ways people relax and pamper themselves. Franklyn immerses himself in once-in-a-lifetime experiences including bathing in a giant tub full of beer, living like a gladiator in a resort next to the Roman coliseum and getting massaged by giant snakes in Israel. The half-hour pilot is produced by M2 Pictures.
“Only In…” (wt) takes viewers on a crazy and visual ride around the globe to discover the places, people and events that are so unique, they can only be experienced side by side with the locals. Venture far off the beaten path and experience amazing cultures that have long captured the imagination, from robot waiters serving dinner in Tokyo to runners competing in a minus-50-degree Ice Marathon on frozen Lake Baikal in Russia. The one-hour pilot is produced by PSG Films.
“Watt’s World” (wt) chronicles reporter and journalist Nick Watt during his travels across the world, discovering all that is strange and beautiful about our surprising planet and its sub-cultures. Having spent years as an overseas correspondent for ABC in such places as London, Afghanistan and Iraq, Watt’s inquisitive nature enables him to truly dig deep, unearthing unique and provocative stories on his journeys. The half-hour pilot is produced by Lincoln Square Productions.