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Last Updated:  Tuesday, 4 March, 2003, 13:42 GMT
Blue Planet heads for cinemas
The Blue Planet
More than 12 million people watched the TV series
Groundbreaking underwater documentary The Blue Planet is to be shown at cinemas around the world.

The BBC series used the latest in high-tech equipment to capture footage of sea life that had never been seen before.

The movie version is being billed as a "rollercoaster tour of the oceans".

The eight-part series, aired in 2001, took five years to film and cost 7m.

But the hard work and commitment paid off as 12 million people tuned in for a glimpse at the hidden world, while the series was sold to 50 countries around the globe.

It also picked up a string of awards including a special recognition prize from Bafta.

German-based production company Greenlight Media will create the 90-minute film for release in cinemas.

It will also have a soundtrack from Oscar-nominated composer George Fenton, while the soundtrack will be minimal to provide what the BBC says will be an "immersive" experience.

'Powerful and emotional'

BBC Worldwide, the corporation's commercial arm, has signed a deal with the company which will see more of its output heading into cinemas.

Greenlight Media's Sophokles Tasioulis said: "We believe natural history documentaries are so powerful and emotional they should be put on the big screen.

"Teaming up with BBC Worldwide is just the right thing to do. This agreement will provide us with the best natural history productions worldwide."

Last year, BBC Worldwide made 106m for the corporation to reinvest in its broadcasting output.

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