Venerable travel and adventure publisher National Geographic is seeking to take a leaf out of the HBO, Netflix and Amazon play book by producing its own TV series to haul its brand into the modern era.
This small screen strategy will bear its first fruit in the form of ‘Genius’ in which actor Geoffrey Rush will play the part of Albert Einstein, focus of an opening season in a series which will delve in detail into the personalities and private lives of famed scientists and engineers.
Genius will be followed out the gates by further blockbuster shows designed to lure viewers into triggering their remotes by offering up a steady diet of ‘fewer, bigger, bolder, much more creatively ambitious’ serials centred on adventure, science and travel.
The new strategy is the brainchild of National Geographic Channel chief executive Paul Kafka, whose vision is to produce ‘fewer, bigger, bolder, much more creatively ambitious’ shows.
Part of this drive is a recognition that the channel must do more to monetise its brand, which includes an impressive 69m Instagram followers, by focussing resources on the lucrative video sector.