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Animal Planet bags rights for 'The Cove'
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Animal Planet bags rights for 'The Cove' - 16-January-2010, 18:01

Animal Planet has bagged the rights for the documentary The Cove.

The film which is expected to get an Oscar nomination makes an undercover, stealth investigation into the culling and slaughter of thousands of dolphins in remote Taiji, Japan. It uses an Oceans Eleven-style approach, bringing to light the dark reality of dolphin massacre.
Animal Planet will air the critically lauded documentary in the first exclusive window after it airs on the Epix multi-platform network operated by Lionsgate, Viacom and MGM.
In his directorial debut, Louis Psihoyos, with producers Fisher Stevens and Paula Dupre Pesmen, follows former Flipper trainer Ric O’Barry’s earnest fight for redemption. O’Barry, who was an active member of the dolphin entertainment industry in the 1960s, came to realise that his role as Flipper’s trainer had contributed to grave problems facing dolphins for the past several decades. Now, O’Barry fights to undo the damage that he played a part in by revealing the monstrous massacre that’s taking place in various pockets of the world’s waters.
The picturesque town of Taiji is the world’s largest supplier of dolphins to the world. But the town has a dark, horrifying secret that it doesn’t want the rest of the world to know.
Underwater sound and camera experts, deep sea free divers, special effects artists and a host of other marine/film experts contribute to this provocative, eye-opening film that captures the wrongdoings of the secretive dolphin industry. The film explores this subject from several points of view including a probe into the dolphin meat market, the abuse of an extremely intelligent species and an investigation into cultural and political reasons for the continuation of this brutal industry.
The documentary has been generating critical acclaim ever since it walked off with the Audience Award at last year’s Sundance Film Festival. Part environmental documentary, part horror film and part spy thriller, the riveting, heart-wrenching but ultimately inspirational documentary is a contender among 15 films under consideration for the Best Documentary Feature Academy Award. It has already won the prestigious National Board of Review Award for Best Documentary, writer Mark Monroe has been nominated by the Writers Guild for Best Documentary Feature and director Louie Psihoyos has been nominated by the Directors Guild for Best Documentary Feature. The film has also been named to dozens of critics’ year end 10 Best lists.
Animal Planet president, GM Marjorie Kaplan says, "The Cove is just the type of groundbreaking, provocative film that belongs on Animal Planet. The film exposed an ugly reality that was veiled from the world for too long a time. We’re honored to bring this remarkable film and the issue of dolphin conservation to television audiences"
Lionsgate executive VP of television distribution Rand Stoll says, "We are delighted to bring the most exciting, original and prestigious content from our Lionsgate family of companies to cable television buyers around the world. Animal Planet is a perfect partner for Roadside Attractions and Lionsgate, and the perfect home for The Cove".
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