Japan, China nets reteam for docu

Historical skein to air next year on NHK

CANNES — China Central Television and Japanese broadcaster NHK have teamed up to co-produce a documentary series.

The two national media giants have already started work on “Silk Road 2005,” which traces the history of the Chinese Silk Road, the main link for hundreds of years between East and West, and highlights major archaeological discoveries along the route.

The pair produced the original “Silk Road” series, which sold to 41 countries 25 years ago.

Shooting has already begun at an archaeological site in Loulan, in China’s northwestern Xinjiang Province, where a 4,000-year-old mummy was recently discovered.

NHK multimedia and international program development chief Fumina Kioke said CCTV and NHK will co-finance production in China on a 50/50 split. “The budget per episode will be very high because of the costs of excavation. NHK has made a substantial commitment to HD technology,” Kioke said.

Cellist Yo-Yo Ma is slated to compose the score.

The first one-hour episode it set to premier on NHK early next year.

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