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KCET Announces Five New Shows for 2012

KCET and Eyetronics Media and Studios announced their fall lineup of California-themed original programming as part of a new $50-million partnership.

The working titles for the five shows are Ocean Alive, Department of State, Classic Cool Theatre, California Game Changers and Retrostory.

“We are pleased to move forward with this exciting initial line-up featuring an eclectic array of educational and entertaining shows covering Southern California ecology, public affairs, lifestyle, innovation and history,” KCET president and CEO Al Jerome said in a statement.

Descriptions for the new programs are after the jump:

Ocean Alive

Emmy® award-winning filmmaker, educator, environmentalist and ocean explorer Jean-Michel Cousteau will host an extraordinary new show that combines the beauty of Southern California and the glamour of Hollywood with the powerful message of conservation. As one of the world’s leading marine preservationists, Jean-Michel is our ecological tour guide, inviting celebrities and public figures to breathtaking locations to explore the area’s dynamic marine life and discuss ways to protect our waters with lively and enlightening commentary. With each segment, viewers will discover new ways to protect the natural integrity of the planet. The series will also have a new media presence to further engage audiences with fun, interactive features and additional information.

Jean-Michel Cousteau, the son of iconic ocean explorer Jacques-Yves Cousteau, said, “I am pleased to explore and share in depth the beauty and power of Southern California’s waters, a microcosm of the global ocean in its stunning beauty and richness, but also at the brink of being overpowered. The problems and the solutions are offshore and we will explore them.”

“We want to reconnect the ocean with everyone under its influence, and that is all of us. We’ll do so by sharing the stories of the sea from throughout the world that touch our hearts and our pocketbooks, and in the company of people who can make a difference. We want to remind people that connecting with the sea and with nature is not only vital, it’s fun.” He will also explain some of the cutting-edge research being conducted through his Ocean Futures Society, a marine conservation and education organization he founded in 1999.

KCET’s Jerome said: “We’re proud to be able to include Jean-Michel Cousteau as an important part of our schedule with such an imaginative new program that encourages us to be good stewards of the environment.”

Department of State

Viewers will experience and understand world events in a new and different way. A more immediate way. With insight from the people who matter. A rotating group of global media correspondents will lead intriguing weekly half-hour conversations and analysis with former public figures and decision-makers about world news of the day.

California Game Changers

Recognized worldwide as a land of sunshine and opportunity, California represents a lifestyle defined by surfing, yoga and Hollywood red carpets. This rich imagery has attracted scores of pioneers for decades looking to take advantage of all California has to offer and make the next mark on the state’s iconic landscape. Merging the science and the style; the technology, innovation and entertainment of California, California Game Changers is a half-hour weekly program exploring those only-in-California industries, innovators and inventions.

Classic Cool Theatre

Viewers will embark on a cinematic journey into classic Hollywood through a new film series that brings the nostalgia, drama and style of vintage Hollywood into their homes. In addition, the series will be enriched with the best of classic international films that impacted the 20th century. Each week, the series spotlights a different classic movie, beginning with a visit to the dark, visually distinctive period of Film Noir with the 1945 classic Detour.

Retrostory(TM)

Remember the Twist? How did Humphrey Bogart get his start? What sparked the Great Depression? A new bi-weekly documentary series inspires and educates viewers with the remarkable stories of the 20th Century through a Southern California lens. Covering the era’s greatest struggles and accomplishments, viewers will learn about social phenomena, influential political and entertainment figures and other revolutionary advancements that transformed The Southland and the world throughout the 1900s.

“Classic Cool Theatre” and Retrostory(TM)” will incorporate assets from Eyetronics’ expansive digital library of films, rare footage, newsreels, cartoons, serials, documentaries, TV movies and series.

“With RetroStory(TM), Eyetronics and KCET intend to make a significant contribution to the documentary genre with original world-class productions that illuminate fascinating aspects of our history and culture during the 20th century,” Bigle said. “I’m also very excited about Classic Cool Theatre, which celebrates timeless movies using our extensive classic film library.”

Mediabistro Course

Travel Writing

Travel WritingStarting September 23, learn how to turn your travel stories into published essays and articles! Taught by a former Vanity Fair staff writer, James Sturz will teach you how to report, interview, and find sources, discover story ideas and pitch them successfully, and understand what travel editors look for in a story. Register now!