Filming began this week in Budapest on the second season of National Geographic’s MARS. The series, which was lauded for its unique hybrid of futuristic dramatization and documentary sequences, once again looks at what life will be like when we are an interplanetary species. Hailed by critics as “thought provoking, “visually stunning,” “ambitious,” “wonderfully innovative, imaginative and intriguing,” MARS season two is set to premiere in Spring 2018 on National Geographic in 171 countries and 45 languages.
The network partners once again with Brian Grazer, Ron Howard and Michael Rosenberg of Imagine Entertainment and co-creator and executive producer Justin Wilkes and executive producer Jon Kamen of RadicalMedia. Veteran Showrunner Dee Johnson (Nashville, ER) is taking the helm this season. Stephen Cragg (Scandal, How to Get Away with Murder) and Ashley Way (Doctor Who, Homeland) join returning director Everardo Gout (Days of Grace) for season two.
This second season’s six-part arc jumps ahead several years into the future after the Daedalus astronauts have built a full-fledged colony - Olympus Town. Having established humankind as an interplanetary species, MARS examines the impact that humans have on the Red Planet and the consequences the planet has on us.
This season, MARS announces its new international crew of interplanetary travelers and moguls:
- Esai Morales (Ozark, NYPD Blue) as Roland St. John, CEO of private enterprise Lukrum Corporation
- Roxy Sternberg (Emerald City, Chewing Gum) as Jen Carson, operation forewoman at the Lukrum mining colony
- Gunnar Cauthery (Genius, War Horse) as Lieutenant Michael Glenn, the newest addition to Olympus Town and second in command
- Levi Fiehler (The Fosters, Mission Control) as Cameron Pate, a molecular biologist tech in Olympus Town
- Evan Hall (Orange is the New Black, The Following) as Shep Master, the wildcard of the Lukrum crew
- Akbar Kurtha (24, Syriana) as Dr. Johar, a psychologist bringing his expertise to Olympus Town
- Jeff Hephner (Chicago Med, Code Black) as Kurt Hurrelle, leader of the Lukrum mining colony.
Reprising their roles from season one are JiHAE (Mortal Engines) as Hanna Seung, mission pilot and twin sister Joon Seung, capsule communicator of mission control; Sammi Rotibi (The Darkest Minds, Once Upon a Time in Venice) as Robert Foucault, Nigerian mechanical engineer and roboticist; Alberto Ammann (Narcos, Apaches) as Javier Delgado, hydrologist and geochemist; Clémentine Poidatz (Marie Antoinette, Shut in) as Amelie Durand, French mission physician and biochemist; Anamaria Marinca (4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days, Fury) as Marta Kamen, Russian exobiologist and geologist; and Cosima Shaw (The Danish Girl, Dirk Gently) as Leslie Richardson, British nuclear physicist.
Showrunner Dee Johnson:
“This season takes us literally into new territory. With no laws, no government and no safety nets of any kind, what is it like to be among the first settlers of Mars? Not only do we explore dangers and mysteries of this brand-new world, but we also explore what it means to be human in a place where so few exist.”
Co-creator and executive producer for RadicalMedia Justin Wilkes
“The struggle between private industry and scientific exploration is going to come to a climax on the Red Planet just as we have seen it happen on Earth. In fact, the fundamental question we ask this season is can we learn from past mistakes, or are we doomed to make the same flawed decisions on another planet?”
Informing the future dramatic sequences at Olympus Town, MARS once again assembles the world’s most brilliant, diverse and contemporary experts within its documentary passages, including Elon Musk, founder and CEO of SpaceX; Michio Kaku, preeminent theoretical physicist and futurist; Ellen Stofan, former NASA chief; and international bestselling author Jared Diamond (Collapse and Guns, Germs and Steel). But this season, the documentary sequences go beyond the world’s leading experts to reveal even more dramatically the potential challenges that we could confront on MARS with real-world scenarios we are facing today on Earth.
Coinciding with the network’s largest global rebrand in its history, the first season of MARS holds the title as the second-most-watched series in National Geographic history. Reaching more than 36 million viewers globally, MARS also became the most DVR-ed show in network history. MARS generated nearly 300MM social media impressions, 35MM video views and 4MM engagements. The MARS November National Geographic Magazine cover story was one of the best-selling issues, and more than 20K units of the English-language version of the MARS book, written by Leonard David, have been sold.
MARS is produced by Imagine Entertainment and RadicalMedia for NGC. For Imagine Entertainment, Brian Grazer, Ron Howard and Michael Rosenberg are executive producers. For RadicalMedia, Justin Wilkes is co-creator and executive producer, and Jon Kamen is executive producer. For NGC, Matt Renner is vice president, production; and Tim Pastore is president, original programming and production.
Executive Produced by Brian Grazer and Ron Howard, Season Two Delves Under The Martian Surface and Confronts the Demands, Perils and Advantages of Colonizing The Red Planet Genre-busting Series MARS Taps into World-renowned Experts in Human Exploration, Including Elon Musk, Michio Kaku, former NASA Chief Ellen Stofan And Author Jared Diamond
Mars season 2 airs spring 2018.
Source: Nat Geo