CNN has been working diligently to create more original non-fiction series for its network. In a new move, CNN is switching strategies and is beginning to produce its own series. The Wonder List anchored by Bill Weir will be CNN’s first show to debut without an outside production company. CNN’s other well known series Parts Unknown featuring Anthony Bourdain and The Hunt with John Walsh both use outside production companies.
On The Wonder List, Bill Weir will take CNN viewers to remote and untouched locations such as the Galapagos and the Everglades. The places, as Weir will explain are in danger of “forces of time or humanity coming down on them.” Weir will aim to answer questions such as Who might be the last person to see a tiger in the wild? Can residents of a Greek isle who have a greater likelihood of living past 100 continue to do so as they are introduced to the trappings of modern civilization? He will also touch on the ever present and polarizing topic of climate change.
Variety reported that in a recent meeting with journalists, Jeff Zucker, president of CNN worldwide said, “If we have the right idea, and it makes more sense for us to do it in-house, we’ll do it.” The in house production for The Wonder List does not mean that all original series for the network going forward with be produced in-house, but that everything is a possibility.
Before joining CNN, Weir was a co-host of ABC’s Nightline. The Wonder List will give him more time than his previous post, where he reported on breaking news with a fast turn around.
The Wonder List takes place over eight one-hour episodes, the first of which launches Sunday at 10 p.m.