Will Smith to helm new National Geographic series for Disney+

The upcoming series, 'Pole to Pole', stems from Smith's Westbrook Studio's first-look deal with National Geographic from last summer

National Geographic is getting the Will Smith treatment. At the Television Critics Association (TCA) Winter Press Tour, numerous new original projects produced under its banner on Disney+, including a series from Smith himself was announced on Monday.

The series, titled Pole to Pole, comes from the deal his company Westbrook struck with Nat Geo back in August 2021. Like the title suggests, the series will follow Smith as he travels from the South Pole to the North Pole (26,000 miles), “to unlock the mystery of Earth’s astonishing diversity and alchemy.”

Will Smith thegrio.com
Actor/Producer/Musician Will Smith speaks onstage during TechCrunch Disrupt San Francisco 2019 at Moscone Convention Center on October 02, 2019 in San Francisco, California. (Photo by Steve Jennings/Getty Images for TechCrunch)

The official description per Deadline reads, “Filming for more than 100 days, the series documents his journey across all of Earth’s biomes: polar ice, desert, jungle, mountain, savannah and swamp. In each location, the explorer Smith and his film crew will embed with local communities and experience firsthand what it is like to live in some of the most amazing and extreme landscapes on the planet.”

Pole to Pole was announced alongside other original series set to debut underneath the NatGeo banner. Great Migrations, Home, Lion, Secrets Of The Elephants, Secrets Of The Octopus, Sentient, Super/Natural, and The Biggest Little Farm Series are some of the natural history series coming as well.

Lion comes from Jon Favreau, who fans may remember helmed The Lion King live-action adaptation with voice over’s from Donald Glover and Beyoncé. The series is described as following, “a single pride for four years and will use cutting-edge technology to explore the challenges facing an entire species.”

"King Richard" Cast Will Smith, Demi Singleton And Saniyya Sidney Surprise Wimbledon Junior Tennis Initiative Players During A Coaching Session Today At Wimbledon
Will Smith is pictured as “King Richard” cast Will Smith, Demi Singleton and Saniyya Sidney surprise Wimbledon Junior Tennis Initiative players during a coaching session today at Wimbledon on November 17, 2021 in London, England. (Photo by Jeff Spicer/Getty Images for Warner Bros.)

National Geographic Content President Courteney Monroe opened up about National Geographic’s collaborations with Will when they struck the first-look deal last summer. Monroe shared at the time, “Having spent the past two years working with Will and the team at Westbrook Studios (along with Darren Aronofsky and Nutopia) on Welcome To Earth, we are thrilled to be expanding our relationship with them and entering into a long-term partnership to produce blockbuster nonfiction content.”

Monroe added, “Will and Westbrook share our passion for telling bold, best-in-class stories that ignite curiosity and inspire people to explore and care about our world, and we can’t wait to see where our next adventures together take us.”

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