Following the formation of National Geographic Partners, the National Geographic Channel is continuing its multi-platform global reach with the renewal of Neil deGrasse Tyson’s “StarTalk”, plus the release of an associated book for Tyson and another NatGeo star, Variety has learned exclusively.
The weekly science-based talk show “StarTalk” has landed a third season on the NatGeo Channel. National Geographic Books will release the first-ever “StarTalk” book, which will coincide with the new season.
“Neil deGrasse Tyson is not only an incredibly accomplished astrophysicist, but also a very gifted communicator who blends pop culture and humor to make science accessible and fun, making him — and ‘StarTalk’ — a great fit for National Geographic Channel,” said National Geographic Channel Global CEO, Courteney Monroe.
Tyson commented, “Science surrounds us daily, infusing civilization in countless ways, and ‘StarTalk’s’ mission is to reveal that intersection. Our guests are selected from all corners of pop culture, allowing us to explore how their lives and livelihoods have been touched by the moving frontier of science.”
Those aforementioned guests include U.S. Secretary of Defense Ash Carter, Olympic gold medalist Hope Solo, “The Big Bang Theory’s” Mayim Bialik and “The Walking Dead” creator Robert Kirkman.
Aside from “StarTalk,” another one of the brand’s most popular shows, “Cesar 911” on NatGeo Wild, has also landed the guest star and book deal treatment.
The third season of the dog whisperer show will welcome Jerry Seinfeld and his wife Jessica on the Feb. 19 season premiere (9 p.m.), in which Millan is enlisted to evaluate the Seinfeld’s dachshunds.
Seinfeld commented: “Here’s where I feel really bad ’cause this poor guy, Cesar Millan, who has fixed every dog he’s ever met … he’s not gonna fix this dog. When he leaves he’s gonna be in tears, ’cause he’s gonna have to say to me, ‘I’m sorry there was nothing I could do. This is one messed-up dog. This dog is a sick puppy.'”
Aside from Seinfeld’s guest spot, “Cesar 911’s” popularity extends far past the comedian, as the show will have another book out soon, following the best-selling 2013 book “Cesar Millan’s Short Guide to a Happy Dog.” NatGeo Books is working with Millian on the release of a follow-up, which will include 10 life lessons imparted by a group of very special dogs that the star has trained over the years.
Along with the books, which are a sign of the NatGeo brand’s multi-platform capabilities, the company has established a cross-platform partnership across its portfolio to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the National Parks Service. The year-long exploration of the power of parks, which will help people better understand the wonders and challenges of parks around the world, will result in content in the magazine, website, channel and more.
“One hundred years ago, the National Geographic Society helped persuade the U.S. government to create the National Park Service. Today, parks are more critical than ever to ensure the health and sustainability of our planet. They connect us with the natural world and inspire us all to be better stewards of our only home. Because we believe in the power of science, exploration and storytelling to change the world, we’re harnessing our global content platforms to focus on the importance of these irreplaceable places,” says Chris Johns, chief content officer of National Geographic Society. “We want people to explore and experience the wonder of these protected places with us and through us, and support our efforts to understand and preserve them.”
The National Parks Service partnership will kickoff with a 12-month series in National Geographic Magazine, plus NatGeo Channel specials, new books, maps and a web portal, “Explore the Power of Parks” on Natgeo.com.
NatGeo also announced two other projects at TCA, including “One Strange Rock” from Darren Aronofsky. The docuseries, first reported by The Hollywood Reporter, films Earth from space for 100 weeks. Nutopia’s Jane Root will also produce.
Sex series “Original Sin” from World of Wonder will look at the sexual revolution of the past century and how it has impacted culture, science and politics globally. “Original Sin,” first reported by Deadline, will air in 2016.