Upfronts 2013: Discovery To Air First Scripted Series

Greenlights Seven New Original Series

Discovery Channel has commissioned its first scripted series as part of an extensive lineup of new programming announced prior to the network’s upfront presentation Thursday in New York.

The scripted mini-series, Klondike, is based on Charlotte Gray’s book Gold Diggers: Striking It Rich in the Klondike will follow six strangers who battle for survival and wealth in a small, frontier town in the remote Klondike, according to Eileen O'Neill, Group President Discovery and TLC Networks.

The network will also offer up several live specials, including Wallenda Live, which will showcase high-wire walker Nik Wallenda as he walks over the Grand Canyon on a tightrope without a harness; and Fast N’ Live, which will pit teams of car restorers against each other to see who can best restore the junkiest cars into classic rides, said network officials.

The network will get naked with two new original series. Naked and Afraid, which will pair strangers in harsh environments with no food, water, tools and clothes; and Naked Castaway which will follow survivalist Ed Stafford for 60 days on a deserted island without clothes, food or tools.

Other new series include Big Brain Theory: Pure Genius, which searches for the next great innovator; Backyard Oil, which follows the fortunes of oil drillers; Cutter Oil, which highlights a small, family run oil company; The Huntsmen, which profiles modern day mountain men and outdoorsmen; and Rock Raiders, which follows a crew searching for the most expensive gems and stones.

The network will bring back its signature Shark Week programming stunt in 2013 along with several other natural history specials including Hidden Kingdom; Penguins: Spy In The Huddle; and Survival.

Returning series include Deadliest Catch; Gold Rush; Fast N’ Loud; Amsih Mafia; Moonshiners; Jungle Gold; Bering Sea Gold; Mythbusters; Curiosity; Dual Survival; and Alaska: The Last Frontier.