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Greenlit: Kingdom of the Apes, Nat Geo WILD

Kingdom of the Apes (1 x 120′) – Documentary featuring world-renowned primatologist Jane Goodall and the chimpanzee characters from Tanzania’s famed Gombe Stream National Park, where Jane Goodall began her pioneering work more than 50 years ago. Her field study revealed the individual personalities of chimpanzees and the complexities of their communities.

The film features the life stories of some the best known great apes that have ever lived. Their individual personalities have shaped the fates and fortunes of each of the animal characters. Some of the best natural history behavior pieces together the most dramatic events in the lives of the key great ape characters. We’ll see behaviors including the struggle for power and politics, going to war to defend their kingdom, and even using sex as part of their social strategy — questioning the line between what is ape and what is human.

Our closest cousins in the animal kingdom are living out dramas that are totally epic, and yet startlingly familiar. Young warriors go to war, kings rise and fall and mothers lovingly raise their young while preparing them for the challenges ahead. We follow along as two brothers, Frodo and Freud, battle for supremacy in a story worthy of Shakespeare. The ultimate prize for one of them is control of their Gombe kingdom. Then we travel deep into the mountains of Rwanda, where a fearless leader, Titus, king of the mountain gorillas, risks everything to keep his throne safe from his own son.

We witness the trials and tribulations of the animal kingdom. Who will dominate? Who is the smartest? Who has the courage to fight? With similarities so close to humans, we feel their pain and joy. This documentary unveils not only the intricate personalities of the apes, but also the very distinct culture of a group. Their interactions with one another are shockingly epic, and yet startlingly familiar.

Channel: Nat Geo WILD

Producer: National Geographic Television

TX: 1th July 2014

Source: Nat Geo press release (via TV by the Numbers)

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