Argonon Group content and third-party slate to feature social history series Portillo’s Hidden History of Britain, large scale cross-platform science project, BBC Pandemic, long-running successful popular factual franchise Botched Up Bodies.
Tuesday 10th October2017: Argonon International, the distribution arm of Argonon Group, announces a brand new Michael Portillo series, as part of its diverse slate of factual, entertainment, cross-platform and factual entertainment shows. Portillo’s Hidden History of Britain, made by Transparent Television, has pre-sold to SBS Australia ahead of MIPCOM 2017.
The four-part series sees passionate historian and architecture-loving presenter, Michael Portillo, roll up his sleeves to become a guerrilla urban explorer as he investigates Britain’s most fascinating abandoned buildings, which hold the key to some of the country’s biggest questions around society’s attitudes to justice, freedom of information, health and individuals vs. the state. In this series, Michael Portillo unlocks the doors and peels back the layers of four extraordinary and mysterious locations across the British Isles; The Royal London Hospital, 400-year-old Shepton Mallet prison, a ghost village and a top secret military base. The 4 x 60’ series launched in the UK on Channel 5 later in 2017.
“We’re bringing a rich slate of Argonon and third-party content to MIPCOM 2017 – from the very exciting medical experiment BBC Pandemic from producer 360 to The Hole in the Ozone Layer from Windfall – where we learn how President Ronald Reagan became the world’s most unlikely eco-warrior,” says Cecilie Olsen, SVP of Sales, Argonon International. “Along with a strong set of recent sales we’re in a confident position to launch our new slate and continue building on our success in the market.”
Argonon International brings a brand new presale programme and format to market in BBC Pandemic, an ambitious, ground-breaking science cross-platform experiment, which could save lives. The most likely and immediate threat to our species is a global pandemic of highly infectious flu. BBC Pandemic App collects user data and will be used to simulate the spread of a highly infectious disease to see what might happen when – not if – a real pandemic hits. The results of this experiment are revealed in a 90 minute landmark documentary, to air in spring 2018 on BBC Four.
Nelly The Snakeskin Woman, which launched at MIPTV 2017, has travelled to 52 territories including SBS Netherlands and Nine Australia. This heart-warming documentary features Nusrit (Nelly) Shaheen from Coventry, who, at just 32 years old, has defied odds to become one of the oldest known survivors of Harlequin Ichthyosis – a rare skin disorder which causes her skin to grow ten times faster than normal, giving her scaly, snake-like skin. The film follows Nelly as she battles to live a normal life in the face of extreme adversity – trying to raise the funds she needs for a life changing treatment. This film originally aired on Channel 5.
Argonon International’s The Bubble Wrap Boy sales include NINE Australia, TLC Africa, TLC Finland, Real Time Italy, TLC Eastern Europe and SBS Netherlands. The film follows 16-year-old Mithun Chauhan, from India, who suffers from an rare genetic condition, neurofibromatosis, giving him extreme, large swollen lumps all over his face and body, which could kill him if untreated. Mithin is handed a lifeline, and travels 800 miles to undergo a series of major and risky operations to not only transform his face but also hopefully change his life for good. This film first aired in the UK on Channel 5.
Sales of the highly successful Botched Up Bodies franchise continue to climb, following a deal with Discovery LatAm for all the series, taking the number of territories where the title has sold to 127 since it launched. With a rise in people resorting to surgery to achieve their perfect body, this fascinating documentary series has exclusive access to celebrities and leading cosmetic surgeons who give them the bums, boobs, faces and tums they’ve always wanted.
Titles launching at MIPCOM include White Kid Brown Kid, a single documentary looking at two girls from very different worlds, as they try to become friends in one of Britain’s most racially segregated towns. Told with honesty and humour, this film follows 16-year-old Siobhan and 17-year-old Farhana as they cross the racial divide and step into one another’s world for the very first time.
In World’s Forgotten Army for the first time on television, a new documentary will explore the untold and secret history of the Chinese Labour Corps (CLC): 140,000 workers recruited by Britain and France in 1916 and 1917 to form the backbone of the Allied war effort, ultimately helping to win the First World War. The documentary will tell the story of how and why these unsung heroes were recruited, politically betrayed and how their remarkable contribution was literally painted out of history in the biggest painting ever commissioned – ‘Pantheon De La Guerre’.
A new documentary presenting at the festival tells the remarkable story of The Hole in the Ozone Layer and how two of the most unlikely eco-warriors in the world, Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher, helped save the planet from an environmental catastrophe. It is the greatest environmental success story of all time with strong parallels to the current global warming debate.
The British Garden: Life and Death on Your Lawn is 90 minute film launching at MIPCOM. Chris Packham and a team of wildlife experts spend an entire year exploring every inch of eight gardens on a suburban street, to answer a fundamental question: how good for wildlife is the great British garden? Beneath the peonies and petunias they reveal a beautiful and brutal hidden world, a Serengeti in miniature, that’s far wilder than you might think. This film captures all four seasons and with help from the Natural History Museum, top naturalists and wildlife experts, Chris reveals how many different species live in the back yards of a single street, and just how good for wildlife our gardens really are. This documentary originally aired on BBC Four in 2017.
Secrets of the Pyramids is an event special that explores dramatic new evidence revealing the important role that ships and ancient waterways played in the construction of Egypt’s Great Pyramid. Together with clues decoded from a long lost papyrus, a pioneering real-time experiment to build a replica vessel, immersive CGI animation, and spectacular drone photography over the Giza Plateau, this event special unravels the secret of how the Great Pyramid was built and how pharaoh Khufu’s innovations transformed his country.