Nat Geo WILD Roars Into 2022 with Annual ‘Big Cat Week,’ A Special Six-Part Series from Award-Winning Filmmakers Dereck and Beverly Joubert, and the Premiere of “Russia’s Wild Tiger” on Jan. 30
This special event includes 11 in-depth programs, each exploring an entirely different big cat species, their struggles as they face extinction, as well as rare, never-before-seen footage in their natural habitats spanning from the Okavango Delta to the Serengeti to Thailand and more.
11th Annual BIG CAT WEEK Highlights National Geographic Society’s Commitment to Conservation
(WASHINGTON, D.C. – Jan. 25, 2022) – Nat Geo WILD is showcasing some of its biggest and rarest cats to date as the network celebrates its 11th year of BIG CAT WEEK, starting Sunday, Jan. 30. This special event includes 11 in-depth programs, each exploring an entirely different big cat species, their struggles as they face extinction, as well as rare, never-before-seen footage in their natural habitats spanning from the Okavango Delta to the Serengeti to Thailand and more.
With each passing year, big cats are faced with greater challenges and risk of extinction. The National Geographic Society is committed to raising awareness of big cats’ adverse situations through programming events such as BIG CAT WEEK, partnering with leading experts, funding research initiatives, and supporting impactful conservation efforts across the planet.
On Sunday, Jan. 30, at 9/8c, Nat Geo WILD debuts BIG CAT WEEK with RUSSIA’S WILD TIGER. The one-hour special focuses on the Amur tiger, which was recently on the brink of extinction with only 30 cats in existence. Now, there are nearly 600. In order to film the essence of this special tiger, the program was filmed across two years from 80 different cameras located in each tiger sanctuary in the Far East, including the Sikhote-Alin mountains, Land of Leopards National Park, Bikin National Park, Anyuysky National Park and many more.
Following RUSSIA’S WILD TIGER, the feline fun continues with THE WAY OF THE CHEETAH at 10/9c and TREE CLIMBING LIONS at 11/10c. Additionally, the week-long event will include several interstitials featuring National Geographic Explorers who are working to protect big cats around the globe.
Additionally, BIG CAT WEEK features a special series from award-winning filmmakers, National Geographic Explorers and wildlife conservationists Dereck and Beverly Joubert, who have been filming, researching and exploring in Africa for over 35 years.
BIG CAT WEEK begins Sunday, Jan. 30, and runs through Thursday, Feb. 3, with an array of programming that includes WAR OF THE LIONS, THE REAL BLACK PANTHER, LIVING WITH BIG CATS: REVEALED, BIG CAT ODYSSEY: REVEALED, and more. Episode titles and descriptions can be found below.
Betty White Goes Wild! – Jan. 30 at 8/7c
We take a rare look into one of White’s true passions – big cats! Celebrate her life and advocacy for animals as we remember when she headed to the Los Angeles and San Diego zoos to get up close to big cats. White weaves her natural wit as we look at the cats’ individual behavioral traits and learn where they live, how many are left in the wild, and the challenges they face.
Russia’s Wild Tiger – Jan. 30 at 9/8c
Records the battle for the survival of the big cats and reveals intimate details of their lives. The animals they prey on are also in the film: tigers couldn’t survive without sika deer, Altai wapiti, wild boars and Asian black bears. Guiding the viewer through the film, an elder tiger tells the story of his cub, born in a conservation area, the year after he leaves his mother. His search for a territory reveals the problems facing tigers in Russia’s Far East and the conflicts that arise when he strays into human settlements. The young tiger takes the viewer to places where the fate of Siberian tigers will be decided: vast forests, remote villages and the cities at the edge of the wilderness.
The Way of the Cheetah – Jan. 30 at 10/9c
Set in Kenya, the story tells of how Immani protects her four cubs against other male cheetahs and other predators. By Dereck and Beverly Joubert.
Tree Climbing Lions – Jan. 30 at 11/10c
Big cat biologist Alexander Braczkowski returns to Uganda to embed with the mysterious tree-climbing lions of Queen Elizabeth National Park. He sets out to uncover their unique climbing culture, but along the way, he gets to know them one on one and reveals the prides’ dramatic fight for survival and their determination to help their cubs survive their first year of life.
Living with Big Cats: Revealed – Jan. 31 at 9/8c
Dereck and Beverly Joubert lead viewers on their incredible journey with big cats – from the first time big cats captured their hearts through their boundless dedication to protecting these iconic predators. This story explores how the Jouberts got started and delves into their personal lives as National Geographic filmmakers and Explorers.
Big Cat Odyssey: Revealed – Jan. 31 at 10/9c
Dereck and Beverly Joubert dive deeper into the issues that surround big cats, specifically African lions and leopards. What challenges do these iconic big cats face? How have these lions and leopards survived and adapted over the decades? The Jouberts lead viewers on an epic journey through the lives of big cats and their most iconic moments.
Relentless Enemies: Revealed – Feb. 1 at 9/8c
A buffalo herd of over 1,200 is forced to move through three lion territories while being confined by the floodwaters on a small island in the Okavango. As the buffalo strategize their advancements, the lions react to each and every move they make. From the Joubert’s home base in Botswana comes the epic story of buffalo and lions surviving and adapting to each other. Narrated by Jeremy Irons.
Ultimate Enemies: Revealed – Feb. 1 at 10/9c
National Geographic filmmakers Dereck and Beverly Joubert explore how some animals are thrust together by the forces of nature – sometimes through a millennium of evolution or even last year’s drought. In the aftermath of strange elephant deaths, they piece together a visually stunning story that confirms their theory that lions were hunting elephants. Narrated by Jeremy Irons.
Eye of the Leopard: Revealed – Feb. 2 at 9/8c
National Geographic filmmakers Dereck and Beverly Joubert set out to create a film on leopards but never imagined they would be seduced by a small, eight-day-old cub named Legadema. EYE OF THE LEOPARD follows Legadema’s journey from a playful cub to a skilled huntress. Narrated by Jeremy Irons.
Eternal Enemies: Revealed – Feb. 2 at 10/9c
Joubert’s Emmy(R)-winning film is back with stunning remastered footage. Propelled by Jeremy Irons’ gripping narration, ETERNAL ENEMIES reveals the story of conflict between lions and hyenas, relatively unknown or even suspected in the scientific world before this. The intense relationship and enduring rivalry between the two species play out in a battle of survival.
War of the Lions – Feb. 3 at 9/8c
From savannahs bursting with game to deserts with not a drop to drink, all lion kingdoms are not created equal … so who is the REAL king of the beasts?
The Real Black Panther – Feb. 3 at 10/9c
The hot, dry, deciduous jungles of South India are no place for a melanistic leopard – but Saya is different. He is the only black panther in the entire Kabini Forest, and he’s got one thing on his mind: to take over this leopard paradise. But Scarface, the current ruler, won’t give it up easily. This is a story of astounding adaptability and success, the journey of Saya – THE REAL BLACK PANTHER.
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