Two-Part Documentary Series Examines the Island of Madagascar's ecological crisis
New York, NY – August 14, 2006 – Equator HD, a high-definition channel dedicated to exploring the world's most intriguing people and places with intelligent travel, nature, and cultural programs, announced today the premiere of the original high-definition two-part special Vanishing Planet. The series, executive produced and directed by Emmy award-winning director Angus Yates, documents the complex story of conservation on Madagascar, an island off the East coast of Africa, where people are struggling to survive off of the land. The region has a unique eco-system but, as examined in Vanishing Planet, the island faces serious deterioration as growing populations and outside interests take advantage of Madagascar's resources. Equator HD is one of the VOOM HD Networks, the largest and most diverse suite of high-definition channels nationwide that is currently available on DISH Network.
Vanishing Planet premieres September 6th and 13th at 8:00 PM EST as part of Equator HD's Keep It Green programming block. Keep it Green, launched in April of this year, and takes an in-depth look at environmental and social issues, informing viewers on how they can get involved. Interstitials within this two-hour block provide facts and news reports and directs viewers to resources, most of which can be found on www.equatorhd.com . This important initiative on the channel aims to educate viewers about issues of environmental abuse and social injustice around the world, thus giving them the tools to motivate them to action.
"Equator HD launched Keep It Green because we believe that giving viewers a first-hand look at the serious issues facing the environment will motivate them to action. Vanishing Planet: Madagascar is a pointed example of one of the world's environmental challenges that must be addressed," said William Roberts, VP of Programming for Equator HD. "Our programming, whether documentary, series, or short form, focuses on showing the world without filters and over- simplifications. It's a true look at what's going on in the real world."
Vanishing Planet examines the balance between the needs of local populations and the delicate eco-systems that support unique plant and animal species. The remarkable island of Madagascar is increasingly under siege as growing populations and pressure from the outside world convert the island's land to serve a variety of human needs. The series examines the increasing rate at which the world's most important engines of biological diversity are shrinking. The island of Madagascar – one of the most important of these eco-systems – hosts an abundance of life found nowhere else, and Equator HD's Vanishing Planet brings viewers a first-hand look at the current situation.
Angus Yates, executive producer for Vanishing Planet, is an award-winning, industry veteran who previously worked for Discovery Networks worldwide on various original series including Eco-Challenge, a series of critically acclaimed prime-time specials covering races. Under Yates, this series was nominated for National Sports Emmy Awards in 1996, 1998, and 1999. Eco-Challenge Morocco won a National Emmy Award for Outstanding Program Achievement and the Banff Rocky Award for Best Sports Program. Prior to that, he worked at CBS News where he worked closely with Charlie Rose on the Nightwatch interview show and on CBS's Evening News with Dan Rather. He has produced segments, programs, and series for National Geographic Television, Turner Broadcasting, ESP, Outdoor Life Network and ABC's American Sportsman.
Since its launch in early 2005, VOOM has gone on to produce compelling original HD content for a wide variety of consumer interests including the largest collection of HD horror films; a live auction of one-of-a-kind memorabilia; animation for kids of all ages and action-adventure sporting events. This new announcement for Equator HD confirms VOOM's commitment to growing and to investing in the brand's aggressive move into the marketplace.
About VOOM HD Networks
VOOM HD Networks is the largest suite of high definition channels available anywhere, produced exclusively in high definition for distribution in the U.S. through satellite and cable operators. The VOOM HD Networks carry programming in categories as diverse as sports, movies, fashion, music and art. Today, the VOOM HD Networks are available nationally on Echostar's DISH Network. The VOOM HD Networks were developed by Rainbow Media to meet the growing demand for quality high definition programming, building on Rainbow Media's history of original programming innovation.
About Rainbow Media Holdings LLC
Rainbow Media Holdings LLC is a subsidiary of Cablevision Systems Corporation (NYSE: CVC). Rainbow Media creates and manages some of the country's most compelling and dynamic entertainment brands including popular national and regional television channels AMC, fuse, The Independent Film Channel (IFC), WE tv, and two FSN affiliated regional sports networks managed by Rainbow Sports Networks. The company also manages Mag Rack and sportskool, two original on-demand networks; VOOM HD Networks, the largest and most diverse suite of high definition channels available anywhere; IFC Entertainment, its film distribution, production and exhibition division; Rainbow Advertising Sales Corporation, its advertising sales division; and Rainbow Network Communications, its full service network programming origination and distribution company.