U.K. pay-TV operator Sky has ordered a slate of nine original documentaries and factual shows ahead of the launch of its new factual channels Sky Documentaries and Sky Nature on May 27.
The feature-length documentaries and series include biographies of Stephen Hawking, which had extensive access to his friends and family, and Tina Turner, with exclusive access to the star herself, alongside a look at Hollywood star Steve McQueen. Two sports documentaries include “The United Way” about Manchester United, led by soccer player Eric Cantona, and “Tyson Bruno,” a feature-length film charting the highs and lows of two of boxing’s best-known fighters.
“Lancaster” tells the story of the Lancaster Bomber, synonymous with epic film “The Dam Busters,” and the servicemen who flew them. From the world of music there is “The Go-Go’s,” which looks at the pioneering female punk band, and “Look Away,” a documentary that looks at the dark side of rock, and a subject that has been glossed over for decades: statutory rape.
The landmark natural history series “Shark with Steve Backshall” dispels the myth of sharks as cold-blooded killers, showing “the misunderstood predator in a brand-new light.”
Sky’s managing director of content, Zai Bennett, said: “These new commissions showcase Sky’s investment in world-class original content and the breadth and range of factual shows our customers will be able to find on Sky Documentaries and Sky Nature. With the launch of these two new services and Sky History, we want to provide viewers with compelling, engaging and informative TV, a place where nature and documentary fans can gravitate to.”
The new shows are in production and will air at the end of 2020 and into 2021.