FremantleMedia to get 'factual' at NATPE 2006

MUMBAI: Fremantle International Distribution (FID) is set to return to the floor at NATPE 2006, bringing with it a raft of world-class factual titles.

The announcement was made by FID managing director David Ellender.

Heading FID's factual programming slate at NATPE 2006 will be Hannibal: Enemy of Rome. This film, which uses the latest research and cutting-edge visual effects, follows one of the greatest military commanders of all time, Hannibal, as he brought Rome to its knees and transformed the western world. Driven by honour, glory and a determination to fulfil his father's legacy, Hannibal's personal struggle took him on an epic journey.

Hannibal was a great success when it aired on Five in the UK, gaining an audience of 1.4 million, 26 per cent higher than the slot average.

FID continues the historical theme with Catherine The Great. The life of one of Russia's most brilliant rulers, Catherine The Great, is the subject of this thrilling drama documentary. This filmed biography tells the story of Catherine's glorious reign, and how she strove to modernise Russia, with new ideas on health and education and waged wars in her ruthless quest for expansion. Her lover, Prince Potemkin became co-ruler, during their obsessive and tempestuous affair.

Drawing on Catherine's intimate memoirs and personal letters, actress Emily Bruni brings to life one of history's most powerful and passionate women. When Catherine The Great aired on BBC2 in the UK, it reached an audience of 2.7 million viewers, 46 per cent higher than the primetime average.

The depth of FID's factual catalogue is exemplified with Love On The Rocks. Steering a safe path through the relationship minefield is not for the faint-hearted. Surviving in a committed partnership takes more than just love. This new series examines the reality of loving, living together and learning ways to make a relationship last. In each episode, brave couples put their love to the test as relationship experts Dr. Ian Kerner and therapist Shannon Fox evaluate their personal lives.

Things get even more personal in The Sex Inspectors. With expert help, this revealing series looks under the bed sheets to help couples with their sexual problems and frustrations. Is it the arrival of children, or are they just not pressing the right buttons?

In each episode a couple will be intimately observed by 'sexperts' Tracey Cox and Michael Alveir, as they look for some practical advice on how to spice up their love lives. Launched in the UK in November 2004, The Sex Inspectors proved an instant success, ranking No. 1 for key target demographics.

After a year of fighting junk food, celebrity chef Jamie Oliver escapes to Italy in his camper van to re-ignite his passion for cooking and his love of good-quality ingredients. In Jamie's Great Italian Escape his quest for inspiration leads him off the beaten track; he'll be going back to basics, living off the land, meeting the locals and cooking up some traditional Italian food in his own style.

Jamie's Great Italian Escape premiered to an audience of 3.6 million viewers on Channel 4 in the UK, claiming a share of 15 per cent.

The second series of Naked Science unveils the truth behind some of the most popular and controversial scientific topics of our time. Using the latest CGI techniques, each episode takes the viewer through the various threads of scientific investigation, following leading protagonists and researchers as they sift through the evidence revealing fascinating stories and thrilling new investigations.

This fast-moving series uses dramatic reconstructions and special effects in a highly visual and compelling style. Naked Science launched in September 2004 to an audience more than double the National Geographic Channel's primetime audience average.

Property Ladder follows amateur developers as they renovate their first or second properties, bought purely to improve and sell on for a profit. Presenter Sarah Beeny follows different projects from start to finish each week, as she calls on her 10 years' experience in running her own successful property development business. She offers down to earth advice on how to maximise profit for minimum investment, and in doing so, move up the property ladder.

Property Ladder premiered in 2001 and is Channel 4's highest rated lifestyle series. With regular audiences in excess of four million, the programme regularly out-performs Channel 4's average.

A brand new acquisition rounds out FID's factual slate, the compelling documentary on the Munich Olympics, Munich Revenge: Assassins Undercover. In September 1972, before the eyes of millions of television viewers, 11 Israeli athletes were murdered by Black September. It was an event that shocked the world and the Israelis planned revenge.

From Atlantic Productions comes this revealing inside story of how the Israeli secret service sought the ultimate revenge for the murder of its Munich Olympic athletes. This is the highly topical true story behind the incredible government-sponsored counter-terrorist mission that is the basis of Steven Spielberg's movie Munich, releasing in January.

Ellender said, "The calibre of factual programming that we bring to NATPE is second to none and, combined with our excellent entertainment slate, promise the variety and quality that buyers at NATPE will be looking for."

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