Alastair Fothergill

Alastair David William Fothergill OBE (born 10 April 1960) is a British producer of nature documentaries for television and cinema. He is the series producer of the series The Blue Planet (2001), Planet Earth (2006) and the co-director of the associated feature films Deep Blue and Earth.

Alastair Fothergill
Fothergill at the premiere for Earth, April 2009
Born10 April 1960

Born in London, Fothergill attended Orley Farm School & Harrow School. He studied zoology at St Cuthbert's Society in the University of Durham and made his first film, On the Okavango, while still a student. Fothergill joined the BBC Natural History Unit in 1983, working on The Really Wild Show, Wildlife on One and David Attenborough's The Trials of Life. He was appointed head of the Unit in 1992, and during his tenure he produced Attenborough's award-winning series Life in the Freezer.

He was awarded the Royal Geographical Society's Cherry Kearton Medal and Award in 1996.[1]

In June 1998, he stood down as head of the Natural History Unit to concentrate on his work as series producer on the multi-award-winning The Blue Planet. In 2006 he completed his next major series Planet Earth.

More recently he was executive producer of Frozen Planet (2011) and The Hunt (2015).

He has also presented several television programmes, including The Abyss and is the author of three books.

He was awarded the "Clean Energy Award" by BMW during the Cinema for Peace award ceremony on 11 February 2008.

In 2008, he signed a multi-picture deal with newly formed Disneynature, and now spends six months each year on sabbatical from the BBC developing feature documentaries as an independent producer. The first few titles under the Disneynature deal had been, for now, African Cats (2011), Chimpanzee (2012), Bears (2014), Penguins (2019), and Dolphin Reef (2019) co-directed with Keith Scholey, Mark Linfield, and Jeff Wilson.

In 2016, Fothergill was made a Fellow of the Royal Television Society for his work in natural history programming.[2] He was appointed Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in the 2019 Birthday Honours for services to film.[3]

Fothergill lives in Bristol with his wife Melinda and his two sons, Hamish and William.

Film and television credits


  1. "Medals and Awards" (PDF). Royal Geographical Society. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2 October 2013. Retrieved 28 September 2013.
  2. "RTS awards new fellowships | Royal Television Society". Retrieved 6 April 2017.
  3. "No. 62666". The London Gazette (Supplement). 8 June 2019. p. B11.
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