Kingdom of Plants

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[edit] General Information

Nature Documentary hosted by David Attenborough, published by BSkyB in 2012 - English narration

[edit] Cover

Image: Kingdom-of-Plants-Cover.jpg

[edit] Information

Kingdom of Plants Kingdom of Plants is an astonishing 4-part series coming to Sky - and is written and presented by natural history broadcaster and Kew neighbour David Attenborough. Entering the strangely slow world of plant time, Attenborough explores how plants cleverly adapt to the changing seasons, including the explosive drama of seed dispersal and the bursts of colour as they bloom. 'One of the most wonderful things about filming plants is that you can reveal hidden aspects of their lives,' said David Attenborough. 'You can capture the moment as one plant strangles another, and as they burst into flower. But whilst time-lapse photography allows you to see things that no human being has ever seen before.’ Filmed over the course of a year at the Royal Botanic Gardens in West London, each of the three 50 minute episodes will cover a different area of plant life, from plant survival in wet and humid zones, scent and communication, and the continual adaptation of plants. This immersive and compelling series reveals a fascinating new look at plant life.

[edit] Life in the Wet Zone

David begins his journey inside the magnificent Palm House, a unique global rainforest in London. Here, he explores the extraordinary plants that are so well adapted to wet and humid environments and unravels the intimate relationships between wet zone plants and the animals that depend on them. It was in the wet zones of the world that plants first moved on to land and in the Waterlily House David reveals how flowers first evolved some 140 million years ago. Watching a kaleidoscope of breath-taking time-lapses of these most primitive of flowers swelling and blooming in 3D, he is able to piece together the very first evolutionary steps that plants took to employ a wealth of insects to carry their precious pollen for the first time. David discovers clues to answer a question that even had Charles Darwin stumped: how did flowering plants evolve so fast to go on to colonise the entire planet so successfully?

[edit] Solving the Secrets

Bladderwort utricularia is a pond-dweller that is among the fastest known, its traps snapping shut in less than a millisecond. As the seasons change, David demonstrates how plants operate on a different time scale to us; how they modify their lives according to the time of year. We discover insects’ hidden links with plants, both as pests and pollinators. UV-sensitive 3D cameras reveal the invisible alter-ego of plants and their flowers’ mesmerizing patterns; a parallel-dimension of strange colours and stunning patterns through which plants communicate with them. With the aid of visual effects, David steps among the swirling vortices of plant scent; communication signals with which plants are inextricably plugged in to the natural world. And using a tuning fork, he demonstrates how plants and insects can even communicate with music. As autumn envelopes the Gardens, fungi reveal themselves not as the enemies of plants but their vital allies. In Kew’s atmospheric Fungarium, David discovers a specimen that has the power of mind control and another that lives underground where it has grown to be so big it can be counted as the largest single organism on the planet. It is 6 times bigger than Kew Gardens itself.

[edit] Survival

David discovers the plants that have evolved to shed their dependency on water enabling them to survive in the driest environments. The story begins at midnight in midsummer as David steps into the Princess of Wales Conservatory to witness the extraordinary nocturnal blooming of a cactus. The queen of the night, with its giant flowers, is the centre piece of a stunning symphony of cacti blooms that burst open in the desert (and at Kew) at night. In a mesmerizing 3D slow motion sequence, we discover the extraordinary connections between cacti and their natural pollinators: bats. As the sun rises, David meets other amazing plants. Species like the century plant, the Agave franzosini, which grows steadily for over 50 years, only to then flower itself to death with one mighty telegraph pole sized bloom which literally bursts out of the roof of Kew’s green house.

[edit] Making

In this series we set out to capture the true splendour of plants, in their own timescale, as they interact with animals, fungi and each other. And what is more, we wanted to film all of this at a microscopic level. Kingdom of plants 3D was to be a series with plants as the heroes, and we needed to do them justice. Our production team at Atlantic embarked upon an exciting technological adventure, developing our own specialist camera kit to shoot 3D in extreme close-up. At Kew the loading bay of the tropical nursery was transformed into a bespoke macro studio, we developed new ways of filming 3D time-lapse, and we built whole new rigs to capture the tiniest details of plant and animal structures. All of this took meticulous planning and a herculean effort in logistics alone, but the hard work has been rewarded.

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[edit] Technical Specs

[edit] SD Version

  • Video Codec: XviD ISO MPEG-4
  • Video Bitrate: 1872 kbps
  • Video Resolution: 832 x 464
  • Video Aspect Ratio: (16:9)
  • Frames Per Second: 25
  • Audio Codec: 0x2000 (Dolby AC3)
  • Audio Bitrate: 192 kb/s AC3 48000 Hz
  • Audio Streams: 2
  • Audio Languages: English
  • RunTime Per Part: 50.Mins
  • Number Of Parts: 4
  • Part Size: 745 MB
  • Source: DVD
  • Encoded by: Harry65

[edit] HD Version

  • Video Codec: x264 CABAC High@L4.1
  • Video Bitrate: CRF 20
  • Video Aspect Ratio: 16:9
  • Video Resolution: 1280x720
  • Audio Codec: AAC-LC
  • Audio Bitrate: 160 Kbps ABR 48KHz
  • Audio Channels: 2
  • Run-Time: 52 mins
  • Framerate: 25FPS
  • Number of Parts: 4
  • Part Size: 1.40 GB (average)
  • Source: BluRay
  • Encoded by: JungleBoy

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