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BBC gets mindful with Headspace

BBC4 in the UK will launch a mindfulness series from BBC Studios (BBCS) and Headspace Studios next month, featuring relaxing content from the pubcaster’s natural history unit.

Andy Puddicombe

Mindful Escapes: Breathe, Release, Restore (4×30′) will begin airing on September 7 and will also be re-edited into a 10×10′ series titled Mindful Earth for the Headspace app.

BBCS will handle international distribution of the four-part series, which will offer viewers immersive experiences within the natural world and will be narrated by Headspace co-founder and former Buddhist monk Andy Puddicombe.

The four films, titled Breathe, Change, Joy and Rest, will feature archive footage from the BBC’s natural history unit, including previously unseen sequences.

Puddicombe will guide viewers on a series of gentle journeys, inviting them to engage in captivating animal behaviour and ecosystems from around the world.

Alice Keens-Soper, who is exec producing for BBCS, said: “This sort of collaboration is a world first for BBC Studios. In what is effectively a new genre of television, the audience is invited to fully immerse in stunning imagery of the natural world and experience it through a mindful lens. It’s perfect programming for these strange times.”

Jill Kellie, BBCS commercial director, added: “We know that our nature content brings joy to viewers and reduces stress levels. The partnership with Headspace Studios enables us to take that to the next level and bring a much-needed oasis of mental calm during these challenging times.”

Mindful Escapes: Breathe, Release, Restore was commissioned by BBC4 channel editor Cassian Harrison and BBC science and natural history commissioning head Jack Bootle.

The commissioning editor for the BBC is Sreya Biswas, while the producers for Headspace Studios are Morgan Selzer and Sam Rogoway.

In related news, RTVS in Slovakia will air a local version of Love Productions format The Great Bake Off following a deal with BBCS Distribution.

It marks BBCS Distribution’s second format deal with RTVS, following the sale of The Greats in 2018.

The latest agreement will grant RTVS the format licence for two seasons of the baking competition, which has been remade in more than 30 countries, with Kenya one of the most recent markets to air the series.

The commission comes as SBT and Discovery in Brazil renewed their licence agreement with BBCS Distribution for a sixth season of the format and a second season was ordered for Czech TV. Production on the Swedish version of the series has also recently wrapped.


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