The newest documentary in the To the Ends of the Earth series is “Oceans.” Award-winning international wildlife photographer and filmmaker Todd Gustafson goes beneath the waves to showcase the beauty of the underwater world. U.N. Messenger of Peace Jane Goodall and Todd narrate and bring the story to life.
Having grown up near Tanganyika’s Indian Ocean coast, Todd shares his insights on the sea life of the area before providing an extraordinary underwater exploration of the world’s tropical seas. Through Todd’s camera lens, an eye-level view of the stunning colors, shapes, textures and behaviors of underwater life is highlighted. Reefs of hard and soft corals, whale sharks, giant manta rays, schools of countless fish, sharks, sea turtles, anemones, living seashells and more are dramatically represented.
The documentary also offers a glimpse into what it takes for a wildlife photographer to capture the still and motion pictures that tell the intriguing story of life in the ocean. Todd explains behaviors and underwater natural history, and he shares photographic techniques and some of the physical practicalities of taking a camera underwater.
Some topics covered in the show include:
- How do water conditions and light quality affect the final image or film of giant southern stingrays?
- What position makes for the most dramatic whale shark images?
- Why do clownfish live in anemones?
- What makes water turn into a wave?
- Does one have to scuba dive to enjoy sea life?
- Are seashells alive?
- How does one keep a camera safe when filming under water?
The dramatic, effervescent visuals of the underwater world are supported by Todd’s series of original musical pieces composed for the “Oceans” soundtrack. Recorded by the 65-piece Nashville Music Scoring Orchestra, these pieces bring to mind the impressionist musical era of Erik Satie, Claude Debussy and Maurice Ravel, making them a perfect match to the amazing visual imagery captured in “Oceans.”
While many conservation-themed shows depict poached animals, pollution and habitat loss, the main purpose of To the Ends of the Earth documentaries is to show the beauty of the natural world and the importance of the world’s ecosystem.
Where to Watch
To the Ends of the Earth: The Natural World – Oceans premieres Wednesday July 12, 2023 at 10 p.m. on CPTV. It will encore Sunday July 16 at 7 p.m. on CPTV, with additional airings on CPTV Spirit on Sunday July 23 at 8 p.m., Tuesday July 25 at 11 a.m., and Sunday July 30 at 4 p.m.
More About the To the Ends of the Earth Series
To the Ends of the Earth started as a gallery, then a limited edition three-book set, and finally a series of hour-long documentaries for public television, complete with soaring orchestral score. The stunning photographs and HD video illustrate what humanity and the natural world have in common, pushing boundaries – those things that forever bind our fates together.
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To the Ends of the Earth: The Natural World – Oceans is presented by Connecticut Public Television and distributed nationally by American Public Television (APT).