A+E Networks UK has commissioned Future Studios to produce a 5 x 60’ history series, Curse of the Ancients, presented by Professor Alice Roberts.

The Krempelwood co-production for Sky HISTORY casts new light on the most dramatic extinction-level events in early modern and ancient human history; battles for survival against natural and man-made catastrophes, which shaped the world we live in today. The series will broadcast on Sky HISTORY in March 2022. Future Studios is also producing 20 pieces of short form content for the series.

Curse of the Ancients spans the period 6200 BCE and the global Neolithic migrations sparked by rising sea levels, to 1486 CE, with the advent of the age of exploration and the rise of the nations and societies we recognise today. In each episode, Roberts takes viewers on a journey of discovery, to epic sites and landmarks which punctuated the rise and fall of the greatest civilisations in human history; including a lost Roman palace in Serbia, the mysterious abandoned city of Shivta in Israel and the epic Spanish Iron Age hill fort of Mount Bernorio.

Along the way Alice will reveal the latest archaeological evidence of civilisation-ending calamities, including the devastating tsunami that changed the fate of 10,000 Ancient Britons, the volcanic eruption that sparked the beginning of the end for an entire Mediterranean civilisation, the results of the world’s most deadly pandemic – as well as the scene of Europe’s earliest and bloodiest battle,  some three-and-a-half thousand years ago.

Professor Alice Roberts said: “This series shows how cutting-edge science can help us to uncover the truth about historical events. Historical research is now a truly multidisciplinary exercise. We find out what happened as our ancestors faced plague, famine and conflict, and how these calamitous events shaped the course of history, echoing down the centuries to today”.

The series was commissioned, and executive produced by Dan Korn, VP of Programming at A+E Networks UK, with Diana Carter, Commissioning Editor and Head of Talent at A+E Networks UK.

Dan Korn said: “There is always the temptation to think of one’s own experience or era as unique and its challenges unprecedented. In fact, as Curse of the Ancients shows us, humanity has been tested again and again throughout history and each time has found the collective will and fortitude to not only survive but to endure.”

Curse of the Ancients is a Future Studios production, Executive Producers are Peter Wyles and John Farrar for Future Studios and Blair Krempel and Mark Wood for Krempelwood.

Peter Wyles, Director of Programmes and Executive Producer for Future Studios, said: “I’m delighted to be working with Alice again on this exciting and stylish series. With the crises that we currently face around the world, it feels very timely to take a look at some of the new research into the study of ancient disasters by scientists who are exploding myths and rewriting history.”

Drive will distribute Curse of the Ancients internationally.


Staff Reporter

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