National Geographic

In 2011 National Geographic USA contacted me to discuss the production of a film they were making about predators involving all the continents on earth, 'Secret Life of Predators'. They asked me if I could assist them with the European section of the documentary which they planned to film in the eastern Carpathian Mountains.

Collaborating with NAT GEO in Transylvania

Of course I jumped at the chance as I am always looking for opportunities to raise awareness about Romania's bio-diverse ecosystems, where 65% of Europe's remaining virgin forests can be found. These forests support all the top predators including lynx, wolf and bear and NAT GEO wanted to capture this, including the relationship between man and predator in the context of a stunningly beautiful and natural environment.

Shane Moore - National Geographic

After eight months of planning the trip was on and the three man NAT GEO crew flew in from the USA.

National Geographic film crew

It was really impressive to witness the dedication and professionalism of the NAT GEO crew, the endless hours they put in each day to gain the best footage for their documentary. It was also interesting to see what goes on behind the scenes when making a documentary film, and the amount of equipment required. This had to be carried in an out of the forest each time a new scene was filmed.

Shane Moore - National Geographic

We were in fabulous company with cinematographer Shane Moore (above), who has worked on many infamous projects such as 'Planet Earth' with David Attenborough (BBC); 'Deadliest Catch' (Discovery); and 'Survival with Ray Mears'. This documentary will go a long way in highlighting the uniqueness of the flora and fauna of the Carpathian region.

Jon Betz (cinematographer) filming a transhumance shepherd. These guys are constantly defending their livestock from large predators and are a good source of information about wolves and bears. Frequency of sightings and direction of travel is all useful information for the film crew.