Sir David Attenborough, 98, is returning to present third and final ‘Planet Earth’ series

Sir David Attenborough is one of the most beloved naturalists in history. Over his incredible broadcasting career, he has helped audiences discover the beauty and majesty of the natural world through his iconic documentaries.

At 98 years old, he shows no signs of slowing down. Fans were thrilled to hear the news that he will be returning to host and narrate a third Planet Earth documentary series.

The original Planet Earth series aired in 2006 and its sequel, Planet Earth II, followed in 2016. Each episode takes viewers on a stunning journey through different biomes and habitats, such as deserts, oceans, and polar regions, showcasing how wildlife thrives within these unique ecosystems.

Sir David Attenborough’s engaging narration has been a hallmark of both series (though some versions in other countries had different narrators, like Sigourney Weaver in the US). His expertise and passion bring an authoritative voice to the series.

“A hundred years ago, there were one and a half billion people on Earth. Now, over six billion crowd our fragile planet,” Attenborough introduces the original series. “But even so, there are still places barely touched by humanity. This series will take you to the last wildernesses and show you the planet and its wildlife as you have never seen them before.”

For many, Attenborough is synonymous with Planet Earth, and it just wouldn’t be the same without him. While the third Planet Earth series was announced back in 2019, it wasn’t clear if Attenborough would return, given his age.

It’s now been confirmed: Attenborough will return as the presenter and narrator for Planet Earth III, set to be released sometime this year.

“Planet Earth wouldn’t be Planet Earth without David, so I’m delighted he is presenting the third series,” said executive producer Mike Gunton in a BBC press release. “As ever, he has brought his huge enthusiasm and wisdom, has been encouraging about our new perspective, and has, I know, really enjoyed seeing the extraordinary new wonders brought to the screen.”

Attenborough has already filmed his opening segment in the picturesque British countryside, blessed with rare good weather on the filming day.

“The opening of the series with David was filmed in the beautiful British countryside in exactly the location where Charles Darwin used to walk whilst thinking over his Earth-shaking ideas about evolution,” Gunton said. “It seemed the perfect place for David to introduce Planet Earth III and remind us of both the wonders and the fragility of our planet… and for him, of course, the sun shined under blue skies one of the only days it did all summer.”

Planet Earth III will premiere on BBC One this year and will consist of eight hour-long episodes. It’s expected to be the final chapter in the Planet Earth series, marking the end of a wonderful trilogy. Exact air dates and international broadcast details will be announced soon.

The first Planet Earth, premiering back in 2006, was the most expensive nature documentary series ever commissioned by the BBC and the first to be filmed in high definition. The series offered viewers an unparalleled look at the natural world and its wildlife. It went on to win four Emmy Awards and a Peabody Award, earning high ratings and acclaim.

The follow-up, Planet Earth II, received similar acclaim, and both series are often cited as some of the best nature documentaries ever produced. These series shed light on the delicate balance within ecosystems and the impact humans can have on them.

“Never have our wildernesses been as fragile and as precious as they are today,” Attenborough said in the intro to Planet Earth II. “At this crucial time for the natural world, we will journey to every corner of the globe to explore the greatest treasures of our living planet and reveal the extreme lengths animals go to survive.”

Sir David Attenborough is a cherished figure in the UK and one of the most influential naturalists of our time. He has been presenting nature documentaries with the BBC since the 1950s, with notable works including the Life series, Zoo Quest, Wildlife on One, and Natural World, as well as narrating Netflix’s Our Planet series.

Planet Earth remains one of the most awe-inspiring documentary series ever made, and we’ve eagerly awaited this third installment. We’re overjoyed that Sir David Attenborough is back to present and narrate what promises to be an epic conclusion to this beloved series!

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