The pact will create eight to 10 new programming specials across roughly 20 hours per year, both one-offs and multipart series, to air on PBS nationwide. The specials, which may be part of PBS’ schedule or featured in ongoing PBS series, including “Nature” and “Great Performances,” will cover a full range of genres — natural history, history, science, religion and the arts.
“PBS and the BBC share similar public service missions and the same commitment to producing entertaining and educational programming of the highest quality,” said Beth Hoppe, PBS’ chief programming executive and general manager. “We look forward to a long and successful partnership bringing the best from both organizations to the table.”
Matt Forde, BBC Worldwide exec VP for TV sales and co-productions, added, “Our organizations have a long-standing relationship in bringing the best of British content to American audiences, with critically acclaimed titles like ‘Sherlock’ and ‘Call the Midwife,’ and this is the perfect foundation on which to extend this partnership into the factual space.”
The specials produced under the new deal will begin to air as early as this summer.