One of the TV highlights of 2016 has undoubtedly been the breathtakingly stunning nature programme Planet Earth II.
Narrated by David Attenborough, the series has been so successful that it has even drawn larger numbers of young viewers than The X Factor.
The final episode of the six part series, which is on ‘Cities’, airs this Sunday, but apparently this may not be the end.
Show producer and creative director of the BBC’s natural history unit Mike Gunton told the Guardian it would ‘crazy to count’ out making new instalments in future, given its enormous popularity.
Gunton also emphasised though how these things take time: ‘We would also be crazy to say it will be here in three years’ time or even five years’ time.’ After all, there was a ten year long gap between Planet Earth and Planet Earth II.
Gunton explained that 10 years felt like ‘the right length of time to revisit the original conceit.’
Between research, production and editing, it could easily be another decade before the next series, but that’s a wait we’re willing to make given the high quality of stuff that that amount of time produces.
Gunton attributed the sadness, anger and disappointments that have characterised 2016 as being a major contributor to the show’s incredible success this year: ‘Obviously I would like to hope it’s the quality of the programmes, but I also think this is a kind of moment.
‘You get a sense from talking to people that they have been worried about the world, and this is an opportunity to see some of the wonders of the world and perhaps take their minds off that.’
He also promised that this week’s episode will be ‘one of the most fantastic and thought-provoking films we’ve done for years.’
It reportedly contains some of the most remarkable footage of the series, including a nocturnal hunt by urban leopards while nonchalant teenagers amble by. It will also have a ‘powerful conservation message.’