What’s the Buzz

NHN Buzz Tracks’ top picks for the day at Wildscreen 2018


ORF Animal Behaviour Award

Blue Planet II – One Ocean
BBC Studios – The Natural History Unit, The Open University, BBC Worldwide, Tencent, BBC America, WDR, France Televisions and CCTV9
United Kingdom

Films at 59 Sound Award

Rise of the Warrior Ape
Keo Films
Sound by Ben Peace, Time & Kate Hopkins

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Wildscreen Sessions

NHN Buzz Track Festival Coverage
Short write-ups, filmed interviews and a round-up of the days sessions.

More Bang for your Buck Wednesdsay 17 October 2018


Tom or Craig Hunter are your first point of call for all natural history commissioning at the BBC for BBC channels BBC 1, BBC 2 and BBC 4. Starting with BBC 4, they commission ten hours of natural history per year. Therefore the content has to really stand out. He’s up for a conversation about what natural history content looks like on BBC 4.

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Taking Conservation to the Netflix Generation Thursday 18 October 2018

Taking Conservation to the Netflix Generation

It’s every conservationist filmmaker’s dream. To inspire audiences long after the credits have rolled to get off the sofa and to take action. Now a new interactive SVOD platform from Off The Fence is doing just that. Join the team behind the WaterBear Network to discover how they engage viewers not just to Watch. But to Join. And to Save.

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COMMISSIONER CLINIC. Channel 4: Tom Porter

Tom Porter, Channel 4’s commissioner for Specialist Factual announced that after a long break from commissioning natural history content Channel 4 is returning to the genre. Over the last few years they’ve produced related content like Autopsy Live, Inside Nature’s Giants and Foxes Live, but with a new management team in place, they want to take natural history to another level.

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High Focal Length Cinematography Thursday 18 October 2018

Tech Session: High Focal Length Cinematography

Andrew Solomon (Head of Natural History, ORF) and Mario Kreuzer (Filmmaker, PKM FilmproduktionsgmbH).  High focal length videography has become significantly more accessible through the use of Swarovski Optik’s high-quality telescopes with larger sensor cameras.

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More Bang for your Buck Wednesdsay 17 October 2018

More Bang for Your Buck

There was a lively and funny conversation between the panel, where Jackie Savery and Andrew Jackson were invited, by Brian Armstrong, to pitch a new series to be set in the fictitious country of Nambia (coined by Donald Trump

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Filming Behavioural Sequences in Tough Envirnments Wednesday 17 October 2018

Filming Behavioral Sequences in Tough Environments

Top Tips:

  • On shoots always have a plan B. Then a C and D!
  • Whatever you hear about the weather prior to a shoot, you are wrong “expect the unexpected”.

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Tech Sessions: Pictures: Locked and Loaded

Take a deep dive into a Natural World edit with the Panda Award-nominated “Red Ape: Saving the Orangutan“. Discover tips and strategies for building gripping scenes and filming with the edit in mind, as well as a chance to get those burning edit questions answered.

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Sustainable Filmmaking Wednesday 17 October 2018

Sustainable Productions

How can the natural history filmmaking community operate more sustainably? The protection of the planet underpins our work and our message. Is it possible to offset the carbon footprint of our travel intensive productions?

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Women in Wildlife

The Women on the panel were in the hot seat at the busiest and most thought provoking sessions of the Festival. They were there to talk about some uncomfortable stuff but in this #MeToo era, there was no avoiding the subject.

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Making Money on Social

Barcroft creates, produces and distributes factual content, which is viewed by large, mainstream audiences around the world. It is divided into Barcroft Productions, Barcroft Media and Barcroft Plus. Barcroft started as a news agency, producing stories with great photographs: a very valuable, creative asset.

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Cinematography Masterclass Tuesday 16 October 2018

Tech Session: Cinematography Masterclass

Inspired by textures, light, feelings and emotions Toby Strong is a lighting cameraman with a passion for people and the natural world. Toby is a multi Emmy and BAFTA award winning Director of Photography.

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A Shot in the Dark Tuesday 16 October 2018

Tech Session: A Shot in the Dark

Shooting in very low light is challenging but recent technological advances have made it easier and better than ever before. Low noise color images are now possible in dim light levels where the human eye can barely see.

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Trojan Horse – New Ways of Finding Fresh Ways to Engage Audiences

Filmmakers and scientists are facing up to an uncomfortable truth; that they are mainly preaching to the converted on issues of environmental change. How can they reach a broader audience without losing sight of the bigger message?

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Co- Producing with Asian Partners Tuesday 16 October 2018

Co- Producing with Asian Partners

Asia makes up 60% of the World’s population – it has 50 billion potential viewers. It is becoming increasingly relevant as a potential partner for natural history films. We heard from three key players in the Asian co-pro market, who helped us understand and navigate the complexities of this brave new world!

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How To Spin a Cat Story Tuesday 16 October 2018

How to Spin a Cat Story

Big cats are one of the world’s most filmed species. So, how do we give them a new twist to reach new and larger audiences? The panel at Wildscreen shared with us their unique and innovative success in doing this.

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A Conversation with Hanz Zimmer Monday 15 October 2018

A Conversation with Hans Zimmer

The music brings the extra information in Natural history to life.

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Shorts: Being Brave

Short natural history films is where most of today’s top talent started. Liz Branch gave some valuable advice for those breaking into Natural History Filmmaking – “Career progression is a lot faster for those making shorts as you learn the craft quicker and with less money involved production companies are more willing to take on talented newcomers”.

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Making the Grade Monday 15 October 2018

Tech Session: Making the Grade

Natural history filmmaking often involves many camera formats and unusual filming conditions. This creates challenges and opportunities within the grade session to enhance and develop the narrative and ambition. Award-winning colourist Blair Wallace will open the lid on his technical and creative approach in the grade.

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A Life Beyond the Screen Monday 15 October 2018

A Life Beyond the Screen

Helping audiences understand and engage with the world around them is every wildlife filmmaker’s goal. But with the natural world at such a critical point in history, informing is only part of our job – we need to make people not only care, but act on it. When we get it right, we have the power to invoke large scale change.

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Coffee is for Closers - What Makes Development Tick

It’s a space race for commissioners and programme makers, and there’s lots of competition to win a commission and win the best films – so how do you go about giving your pitch the best shot? Meghan cassin and Jessie Springer of Nat Geo Wild gave us their take.

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The NHN Buzz Track team are at Wildscreen 2018 to provide our members and Wildscreen delegates with an unofficial guide to what’s happening at this year’s film festival.

We’ll give you our top picks for the day, short write ups and filmed interviews, and a round up of the days sessions.


NHN Buzz Track Team

Lizzie Green has been a Producer of wildlife films for 23 years and worked as a staff Producer at the BBC Natural History Unit and at Partridge Films before that. She has made films for ABC, Discovery and PBS/Nature and has  strong connections within the BBC Natural History Unit and in the independent international wildlife TV business.

Vicky Halliwell is a specialist web designer and online marketing specials with 20 years experience. She is also a Zoology graduate from Bristol university, with a special interest in natural history films, and a career that includes working with Chris Parsons, Jane Krish, Harriet Nimmo and Wildscreen.

Gail Kakula

Gail Kukula is completing her Masters degree in wildlife filmmaking at UWE and is interested in cinematography and the technical side of filmmaking. She is also a scuba diving instructor and specializes in filming underwater macro behavioral sequences in the wild. Born and raised in the Canary Islands, she’s also fluent in Spanish, Gail’s thesis documentary is about the extraordinary ‘flamboyant cuttlefish’. Gail will be available to hire in November 2018.

Della Golding has worked for over a decade as both a presenter and producer of Natural History Films and as a Zoologist. She specialises in remote area productions. “The more challenging the shoot the more interesting it is for me”. Currently completing her MA Wildlife Filmmaking degree at UWE in partnership with the BBC NHU, Gail’s thesis documentary called “Firekeepers of Kakadu” focuses on the Indigenous Australian culture. Della will be available for work in November 2018.


The Natural History Network is the centralised, subscription-based online hub for the global, professional wildlife film community. 

We bring together all elements of the international wildlife film industry under one virtual roof. It is our mission to support and promote all those that work in it.
We are a trustworthy and respected resource. Our members that include many of the world’s international freelancers experts in both production and craft.  Our company members /partners include BBC NHU, Terra Mater, NHNZ , Beach House and Silverback Films.

Individual, annual membership includes:

  • access to our online content and archives (a mix of interviews – with key industry influencers/leaders – articles, news, kit innovations, festival updates and more);
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  • benefit from the endorsement of being on the NHN website and listed
  • amongst some of the best talent in the industry;
  • networking opportunities.

Plugging the gap between film festivals, and keeping those conversations going, we host monthly networking meetings in Bristol – with key presentations from industry leaders and trade stalls – which are filmed an made available online.

Standard membership, with profile, unlimited external links, three embedded clips, availability calendar and last minute availability request/alerts costs £72pa (discounted rate for newcomers £56pa.

If you are interested in joining, please email (registration@naturalhistorynetwork.co.uk), follow this link to our website or come and find us at Wildscreen – we will be at the Hub between 2pm and 2:30pm Tuesday through to Thursday (please text on 0781 402 3385)

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