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U.K. and U.S. Deals for Shipwreck Graveyard Documentary (EXCLUSIVE)

Channel 4 has snagged the U.K. rights to a documentary series about an expedition to the depths of the Black Sea and a shipwreck graveyard containing what is thought to be the oldest intact wreck ever found. “Lost Worlds: Deeper into the Black Sea” has also already been picked up by Discovery in the U.S.

The two-parter was three years in the making. David Belton and Andy Byatt, whose credits include the Emmy and Bafta-winning series “Blue Planet,” made the 4K series under the Black Sea Films banner. They used cutting edge underwater filming technology to capture images from over a mile below the surface, including of the 2,400 Greek ship reckoned to be the oldest intact wreck.

The filmmakers followed the Black Sea Marine Archaeology Project (MAP), the world’s biggest ever maritime archaeological expedition. In the course of their work, the MAP team discovered dozens of remarkably preserved ships from the Roman, Byzantine and Ottoman periods spanning two and a half millennia.

U.K.-based boutique distributor and funding specialist Drive handles sales of the doc and struck the U.S. and U.K. deals. Discovery has reversioned the series into a two-hour special and launched it on Science Channel. In the U.K., it will premiere soon on Channel 4’s More4 service.

Drive also sealed an SVOD deal for the show, with factual streamer CuriosityStream.

“This is an extraordinary series that follows a passionate team and charts some of the most incredible deep-sea discoveries in history,” said Ben Barrett, co-MD of Drive “Viewers around the world will get to experience some truly unique shipwrecks in these films, and we’re delighted that More4 and Discovery have picked up the series.”

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