Television

BBC to celebrate life and work of Charles Darwin

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MUMBAI: UK pubcaster BBC has announced a "season of content" to mark the life and work of Charles Darwin on BBC Winter 08/09.

The season will celebrate the 200th anniversary of the birth of Charles Darwin which completes on 12 February, 2009. It will also mark the 150th anniversary of the publication of his book On the Origin of Species, which laid out the theory of evolution by natural selection. The book completes its 150th year on 24 November 2009.

BBC Vision controller Knowledge Commissioning George Entwistle said, "The key Darwin anniversaries provide an excellent opportunity for the BBC to explore in real depth this revolutionary idea, and the man behind it. The season will stretch across the BBC landscape and we're delighted to have content from across television, radio and online. We hope it will connect our audiences to Darwin the man, as well as Darwin the scientific revolutionary. I hope this season will inspire our audiences and deliver real insight into his ideas and what they mean for contemporary society."

"2009 and 2010 are years of great significance for science and will see a major push from the BBC in the public understanding of science The BBC has commissioned some of the biggest science landmarks we have ever done, covering some of the most important fundamentals of scientific literacy," added BBC Vision head of Science John Lynch.

A range of BBC content from BBC Science, Natural History Unit, Religion and Ethics and CBBC will be delivered across television, radio and online wherein stories and voices about this "mould-breaking" scientific theory will be showcased.

BBC One will kick off the season with a one-off special from David Attenborough and the Natural History Unit (NHU) in Bristol.

Tree of Life will explore the origin of Darwin's idea.

Andrew Marr On Darwin's Legacy is a series for BBC Two, which aims to explore the radical impact of Darwin's theory not only in science, but also society, political movements (capitalist, Marxist and fascist) and religion.

BBC Four will present two specially commissioned one-off documentaries: What Darwin Didn't Know and Darwin: In His Own Words.

Entomologist and farmer Jimmy Doherty will recreate many of Darwin's ground-breaking plant experiments at Down House, the Darwin family home in Kent, in Darwin's Garden.

BBC One has also commissioned Life from the NHU, a natural history special which captures animal survival behaviours.

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