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Netflix just poached a television icon

Netflix just poached a television icon
[Photo: Mikedixson/Wikimedia Commons]

His voice surely makes any documentary lover, environmentalist, or stoned college student perk up. I’m of course talking about Sir David Attenborough, the iconic commentator behind beloved nature documentary series Planet Earth and Blue Planet. Those shows have historically been made by the BBC, but now Attenborough is leaving his home channel for a new foray on Netflix.

The 92-year-old figure, who has worked for decades with the BBC, is part of a new series called Our Planet. This show will take a cue from past Attenborough-affiliated programming and features habitats from around the world. According to Variety, it was filmed in more than 50 countries and features “the Arctic wilderness, the deep sea, the vast landscapes of Africa, and the diverse jungles of South America.” Our Planet will launch on April 5 of next year.

This is just one more way Netflix is trying to remain a television heavy hitter. The company has been bulking up its programming even more of late; it is spending $8 billion this year alone on its lineup. Earlier this week it announced new animated shows, and today we have its latest big talent announcement.

The question remains whether or not this will be enough for Netflix to remain a leader. Some analysts fear the company will be in some real trouble as more competition enters the fray. Disney, for instance, is about to launch its own streaming service–which will very likely eat into Netflix’s subscriber numbers. Already, exciting new shows are being announced with this soon-to-launch service.

Still, Netflix is forging ahead, signing big talent like Attenborough to keep customers happy. But as the streaming enterprise continues to expand, will it be able to afford the programming to grow at the pace it needs to?

Instead of answering that question, let’s just chill out and watch a nature documentary.

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