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    In October, one of our history consultants presented a DVD of our new special to the Pontiff during a special audience in St. Peter's Square...


    Since 1999, the Sentinel Awards have honored TV shows and movies that educate and motivate viewers to make choices for healthier and safer lives. We're thrilled to have had our climate change special for EXPLORER honored as one of 14 programs selected from over 80 finalists.

    The awards are sponsored by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and presented by HH&S, a program of the Lear Center and a one-stop shop for writers and producers in search of accurate information on public health and climate change topics, and funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.


    For the second year in a row, our AHC series has earned a nomination for Outstanding Lighting Direction and Scenic Design! Big congrats to our nominees:

    Production Designer
    RA Arancio-Parrain

    Directors of Photography
    Tim Metzger
    Brandon Ripley

    Greg Eichman


    Last fall, we snapped a shot of Bill Nye in the midst of climate change “depression” for our Nat Geo EXPLORER doc Bill Nye’s Global Meltdown. The shot was his idea… and it went viral.

    Check out some more samples of the meme that rocked the internet:

  • GUNSLINGERS Season One nominated for an Emmy Award!

    Outstanding Lighting Direction & Scenic Design

    Gunslingers (American Heroes Channel)

    Production Designer
    RA Arancio-Parrain
    Director of Photography
    Tim Metzger
    Greg Eichman

    Big congrats to RA, Tim, Greg and the entire Art Department and Lighting crew! The awards ceremony is September 28th. Fingers crossed for our heroes!!


    We're thrilled to report that our AHC docudrama series is on the short list for a Real Screen Award in the History/Biographical category. We're proud to be in tremendous company with the best historical programming of the past year from around the globe. The ceremony will be held in Santa Monica on June 2nd. Fingers crossed! Here are the nominees:


    After The Wave (Australia)
    Broadcaster: SBS Television, Discovery UK
    Production company: Flaming Star Films
    Executive Producer (for the production company): Sharyn Prentice
    Executive Producer (for the broadcaster): Joseph Maxwell - SBS, Adam Jacobs - Discovery UK

    Gunslingers (U.S.)
    Broadcaster: American Heroes Channel
    Production company: Castle Pictures
    Executive Producer (for the production company): Christopher Cassel
    Executive Producer (for the broadcaster): Max Culhane

    Stonehenge Empire (United Kingdom)
    Broadcaster: Smithsonian Channel, BBC, Canadian Broadcasting Corporation
    Production company: October Films, Lightship Entertainment, Interspot Films
    Executive Producer (for the production company): Adam Bullmore - October Films, Terence McKeown - Lightship Entertainment, Heinrich Mayer-Moroni - Interspot Films
    Executive Producer (for the broadcaster): David Royle, Charles Poe, Tim Evans

    Inside the Hunt for The Boston Bombers (U.S.)
    Broadcaster: National Geographic Channel, Channel 4
    Production company: RAW
    Executive Producer (for the production company): Louise Norman
    Executive Producer (for the broadcaster): Robert Palumbo

    The World Wars (U.S.)
    Broadcaster: HISTORY
    Production company: Stephen David Entertainment
    Executive Producer (for the production company): Stephen David
    Executive Producer (for the broadcaster): Paul Cabana, Russ McCarroll, Elaine Frontain Bryant

  • 'Gunslingers' Renewed for Second Season by American Heroes Channel

    Written By Amanda Kondolojy

    May 4th, 2015 via press release:


    -- The Network's #1 Original Series Will Return in July 2015 --


    American Heroes Channel (AHC) has greenlit a second season of its breakout hit docudrama, GUNSLINGERS, a series that immerses viewers in the true stories behind Infamous icons and fabled conflicts of the Wild West. Currently in production on six all-new episodes, GUNSLINGERS exposes real, often little-known adventures of the Old West's legendary characters and how their fearless pursuit of freedom and profit still resonates in America today. Each episode offers a thrilling, heart-pounding ride alongside an Infamous lawman or outlaw as he navigates his way through a series of pivotal showdowns in a volatile place and time, when death could be lurking around any corner. Juxtaposed with cinematic recreations featuring dramatic stunt work, expert commentary is layered throughout each episode to ensure the authenticity and historical accuracy of each story. Season two of GUNSLINGERS will premiere on AHC in July 2015.

    GUNSLINGERS is AHC's #1 original series in Prime delivery among P25-54 (213k) and M25-54 (151k). The series debut on July 20, 2014, at 10p still holds the record for the network's best original debut telecast in Prime delivery among P2+ (770k), P25-54 (247k) and M25-54 (183k).*

    GUNSLINGERS is produced for American Heroes Channel by Castle Pictures, Inc., with Chris Cassel as executive producer. For American Heroes Channel, Max Culhane is executive producer, Sara Kozak is SVP of production, Kevin Bennett is general manager, and Henry Schleiff is Group President.

  • Castle Pictures' new project for Military Channel – "Gunslingers" – was just announced as a key project in the network's upcoming season.

    The Military Channel announces its programming slate for the 2013-14 Upfront season, with upcoming premieres that showcase real-world heroism – stories of camaraderie on battlefields, at sea and in the skies – applying modern-day perspective and context to the pivotal events that shaped the world we live in today. New programming will also highlight military history's most unforgettable moments and intrepid personalities, from conspiracy theories and covert operations to gunslinging warriors of the American West and real-life war heroes that inspired Hollywood blockbusters.

    "The Military Channel is supersizing its content, making us the only home on television for the battles, technology and the heroic stories we know our audience loves," said Kevin Bennett, SVP of programming for the Military Channel. "With subjects that span world history, our series and specials explore the incredible ripple effects of critical moments in time."

    Military Channel's 2013/2014 Upfront programming slate includes:

    The Military Channel presents an emotional and awe-inspiring new original series that tells the stories of an outnumbered group of soldiers whom have found themselves in life or death situation with all the cards stacked against them. Their enemy is larger, stronger, and determined to win, but our band of brothers must pool their resources and summon the strength to mount the seemingly inconceivable mission of overcoming their aggressors. AGAINST THE ODDS showcases the greatest, most unbelievable and awe-inspiring "mission impossible" stories of unparalleled heroism and strength in the face of seemingly insurmountable adversity.

    GUNSLINGERS immerses viewers in the true stories behind the original soldiers who roamed the Wild West. Many of the names are familiar – Billy the Kid, Jesse James, Wild Bill Hickok, Doc Holliday – but much of what we think we know about them is based more on legend than on fact. Each episode of GUNSLINGERS is action-packed, providing viewers with little-known takeaway information about the lives and backgrounds of the infamous generals as they navigate their way through a series of pivotal showdowns in a volatile world, where death was lurking around every corner.

    The soldiers and everyday heroes in Hollywood action films seem almost superhuman – they dodge bullets on the battlefield, take out the bad guys on the street and save the damsel in distress. Of course, they're just movie characters. So who are the real heroes of history? In each new episode of the Military Channel's new series DIE HARD HISTORY, viewers meet an amazing variety of "badasses" who changed the course of history – from the unsung heroes of war, to the average Joe's – all who risked their lives, braved certain death, or tuned the tide of battle.

    From Chile to Afghanistan, CIA: DECLASSIFIED tells the real stories of the CIA's covert operations, drawing from the declassification of documents which have been released over the last twenty years. Every episode uncovers a new, hidden secret from hundreds of newly declassified documents, including a preview of the CIA manual on how to conduct assassinations, and explores a variety of must-know topics, such as how the CIA's top secret Special Activities Division tracked down a vicious Al Qaeda terrorist in Somalia, and how a mild-mannered American living in Chile was in fact a CIA commander responsible for overthrowing the Chilean government.

    Was the sacrifice of an entire generation worldwide an avoidable or a necessary tragedy? Are the roots of World War II to be found in the devastation of World War I and the Treaty of Versailles? In this all new series, the Military Channel seeks to address such questions, drawing from over 300 hours of archival footage and tracing the journeys of the civilians and soldiers across the world, anonymous or well-known, who fought for survival in this unprecedented period in human history, both heroic and barbaric.

  • “Hacking the Planet,” New Series on The Weather Channel, Asks “Can Man Control Mother Nature?”

    The Weather Channel announced today that it has greenlit "Hacking the Planet," a new series that tracks the fascinating work of scientists developing ways to prevent, weaken or redirect threatening weather conditions and natural phenomena including tornadoes, hurricanes, lightning, earthquakes, and volcanic eruptions. Produced by Castle Pictures, Inc., "Hacking the Planet" features 6x 30-minute episodes and will premiere Thursday, Feb. 28, 2013 at 9:00 p.m. ET.

    What if humans were no longer as susceptible to Mother Nature's wrath? Geo-engineers are exploring seemingly unimaginable concepts, including attempts to deflect hurricanes, increase and decrease rainfall, channel lightning, and harness the power of tornadoes. Each episode of "Hacking the Planet" will follow host and former Scientific American editor-in-chief John Rennie through a series of field experiments, illustrated by unique animated graphics, to uncover strategies for potentially manipulating the Earth, and whether those plans would help mankind, harm the planet, or both. Rennie will be joined by Huffington Post's"Talk Nerdy to Me" Science Blogger Cara Santa Maria and Brian Malow, science writer and science comedian, who will help Rennie talk through each scenario and its plausibility.

    "It simply defies nature to think that humans could prevent rain from disrupting a sporting event or use lasers to draw lightning away from sensitive areas like nuclear power plants," said Michael Dingley, senior vice president, content and development, The Weather Channel. "It's fascinating to imagine a world where we can could manipulate the planet's most powerful natural forces. If any of these experiments are successful, it's truly mind-boggling to think what that could mean for our future."

    "Hacking the Planet" joins an ever-growing slate of original series for The Weather Channel, including "Coast Guard Alaska," "Coast Guard Florida," "Hawaii Air Rescue," "Hurricane Hunters," "Ice Pilots," "Iceberg Hunters," "Iron Men," "Lifeguard!," "Plane Xtreme," "Pyros," and "Turbine Cowboys," as well as upcoming series "Deadliest Space Weather" (January 10, 2013), "Reef Wranglers" (February 12, 2013,) "Prospectors" (March 5, 2013), "Reel Rivals" (May 2013), and "Tipping Points" (October 2013).

  • New Development Hire at Castle Pictures

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – NYC non-fiction production company Castle Pictures, Inc. announces a new hire to expand its development slate across multiple genres.

    Effective immediately, Claudina Del Guidice assumes the newly created role of Director of Development, based in New York. She will be responsible for the co-creation and development of original series in the reality, comedy and docu-drama arenas. Prior to joining Castle Pictures, Claudina was a founding member of the Peabody Award-winning Onion News Network, and produced for AT&T and Capital One. "Claudina is passionate about discovering new talent and creating entertaining content with a core purpose. Her commercial sensibilities and her experience in talent-driven and comedic programming will be a great complement to our core strengths in vérité, re-enactment and info-driven content," said Chris Cassel, President of Castle Pictures.

    Claudina will report directly to Cassel, who recently moved the company to new offices in Lower Manhattan, where it is currently working on projects spanning the realms of earth science, motherhood and outlaws for three established U.S. cable nets.

  • Cassel builds Castle

    Christopher Cassel, showrunner, director and writer for Manhattan production company KPI for thirteen years, has launched his own New York-based prodco, Castle Pictures, Inc., as President and Creative Director.

    Cassel has spent the past decade circling the globe to bring the world's greatest characters and wonders to life on History, Discovery, Science, Animal Planet, A&E, TLC and Bravo. Most recently, Chris worked as supervising producer and writer, with executive producer Steven Spielberg, on Rising: Rebuilding Ground Zero, a six-hour mini-series event that premiered on Discovery and Science.

    In 2006, Cassel's History special Rome: Engineering an Empire won two Primetime Emmys, including Outstanding Nonfiction Special. His credits include marquee series and specials The Dark Ages, The White House: Behind Closed Doors and Clash of the Gods for History, The Uprising for Animal Planet, and Apocalypse How? for Discovery. His projects have earned six Emmy nominations, a BANFF nomination and two Tellys.

    Under his new banner, Cassel is pursuing a slate of epic, immersive and transformational stories borne out of exploration, travel, history, the natural world, engineering, sports and every day American life. He is developing Upon This Rock, a scripted serial drama set in Renaissance Rome that follows the larger-than-life true characters behind the building of St. Peter's Basilica; Built Planet, a sweeping documentary series that traces human history through the evolution of architecture and engineering; and Lazarus, a fiction screenplay inspired by his two years filming at Ground Zero for Rising, which follows a traumatized 9/11 survivor in the first year after the attacks.