‘One Strange Rock’ EPs on their ‘Wild’ Experience, Working with Will Smith

Variety | 3/26/2018 | Danielle Turchiano
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Filmmaker Darren Aronofsky knows more than a few things about creating big, bold, eye-catching images on-screen designed to heighten the emotional experience for a viewer. But he also knows that today’s audience often consumes their media on small screens, like their smartphones. So when he set out to executive produce his first project for television — the natural history docuseries “One Strange Rock” — he and his producing partners from Nutopia and Protozoa Pictures knew “incredible images” could only be one part of the equation.

“Ideally, the bigger you can see it and the better sound, that’s great, but what we’ve tried to do with the show is create an emotional experience, and the emotional experience should come through [no matter where you’re watching]. It’s a story, and the story translates,” Protozoa’s president Ari Handel tells Variety. “What this show does is break down an incredibly complex system.”

Order - Story - Life - Earth - Strange

In order to tell the story of how and why life is even able to exist on Earth, “One Strange Rock” cuts between interviews with the astronauts, Smith’s narration, shots from space and close-ups on landscapes to demonstrate some abstract scientific notions. They filmed in 45 countries, on six continents, and even from the international space station. Capturing the experience of seeing the planet from space was key, but it was that science that the team started with when approaching the show.

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“We looked at the different systems that make this spaceship work. Oxygen was pretty much the big one because pretty much every creature on the planet needs oxygen,” Aronofsky says.

Producers - People - Expertise - Area - Science

From there, the producers wanted to bring in people who would have not only expertise in the area of science they were exploring...
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