Coming soon to BBC – Atlantis – end of a world, birth of a legend

Hmm I’ve always been fascinated by stories of Atlantis and how much of the tales is myth and how much is fact.  I’ve just seen a press release for a new big budget show about the mythical city which promises the makers will be part drama and part Documentary.

Check out the press release for all the info.

New drama and documentary coming soon to the BBC
BBC One is to tell the dramatic story of the greatest natural disaster to shake the ancient world, a disaster that triggered the downfall of a civilisation and spawned a legend.

Around 1620 BC a gigantic volcano in the Aegean Sea stirred from its 19,000-year slumber.

The eruption tore the island of Thera apart, producing massive tsunamis that flooded the nearby island of Crete, the centre of Europe’s first great civilisation – the Minoans.

This apocalyptic event, many experts now believe, provided the inspiration for the legend of Atlantis.

Based on the work of leading scientists, archaeologists and historians, this drama immerses viewers in the exotic world of the Minoans.

Starring Reece Ritchie (The Lovely Bones; Prince Of Persia ) and Stephanie Leonida (Yes; MirrorMask), Atlantis is the first British TV drama to use the virtual backlot production technique of the movie 300.

Incorporating the latest CGI technology, the film brings viewers face to face with one of history’s greatest disasters – from the precursory earthquakes through the eruption sequence to the pyroclastic flows and tsunamis.

The programme is a co-production with Discovery, BBC Worldwide, Pro Sieben (Germany) and France Deux (France).

In a companion documentary on BBC Two, historian Bettany Hughes traces the origins of the Atlantis myth and presents compelling evidence that the Thera eruption inspired Plato’s account of Atlantis.

Executive producer Ailsa Orr said: “Atlantis will immerse the viewer in a world they’ve never seen before, in a brand new, exciting way.

“The world of the Minoans and the disaster that wiped them out has been created using visual effects that have, to date, only ever been used in Hollywood movies.

“It offers our audiences a unique viewing experience – the closest they’ll ever get to one of the greatest natural disasters of all time.”

Notes to Editors
Atlantis is a BBC Northern Ireland Production.

Virtual backlot production technique of 300 means that the entire production is shot in a studio against green screen, mixing physical with virtual (CG) set builds. The technique provides unique creative control over the visual style of the film.

Michael Mosley (executive producer) executive produced many of the BBC’s high-end factual dramas, such as Pompeii – The Last Day, Supervolcano, Superstorm and Krakatoa: The Last Days.

Ailsa Orr (executive producer) is BBC Northern Ireland’s Head of Programmes and was the Producer behind Pompeii – The Last Day, Supervolcano, Hannibal and Superstorm.

Detlef Siebert (series producer) has a long track record in historical programmes. Most recently, he was the drama director on Auschwitz – The Nazis And the Final Solution, wrote and directed the drama-documentary The Somme – From Defeat To Victory, and series produced Nuremberg – Nazis On Trial.

Tony Mitchell (director) pioneered historical documentary dramas with Neanderthal and Ancient Egyptians and is one of the world’s top directors of CG-heavy drama, including Supervolcano, Primeval and Flood.

GS Reporter: Nuge

Source: BBC

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  1. Richard Welch /

    I hope no one takes this program seriously since the Thera theory of Atlantis is utter fiction. The ash cloud was blown east, not south, and the Minoans were flourishing on Crete for at least 80 years after the eruption — until they were overun by the warlike Achaeans. Atlantis was just where Plato said it was. It was a supervolcanic island off Portugal that exploded and sank in the 17th century BC (See Roots of Cataclysm: Geopulsation and the Atlantis Supervolcano)

  2. Juan Graham Locke /


    I was fortunate enough to b a featured
    Extra in the Documentary & got to do
    A scene with Reese Ritchie who is
    Really kind & nice. Just was wandering
    If & when it would be airing in SA as
    I would like to see it.

    Many Thanks
    Juan 😉

  3. George Taylor /

    I can only echo the above criticism of the BBC for spending vast amounts of license payers’ money on a drama promoting the false and unscientific theory that the Thera eruption of 1600 BCE was the basis of the myth of Atlantis, first mentioned by Plato some 1200 years later!

    Plato makes it clear in his writings that Atlantis is a myth, without historical basis. He compares the catastrophe to the conflagration caused when Phaethon fell to Earth in the Sun chariot, but no-one tries to place this as a real event, so why try to do the same with Atlantis?

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