Advanced Television

Discovery offers insider view into Winter Games opening

February 18, 2022

As Olympic Winter Games Beijing 2022 draws to a close, Discovery has announced a new documentary series Behind the Opening Ceremony: The Director’s Cut. Giving viewers the opportunity to step into all the performance and planning in the lead up the Games’ stunning opening spectacle, the documentary offers unprecedented access to key individuals involved in the Ceremony, including veteran Chinese Director, Zhang Yimou. Behind the Opening Ceremony: The Director’s Cut premieres on Discovery Channel in South East Asia, India, Japan, and discovery+ in India and the Philippines on February 19 and Discovery Channel in Korea on February 20.

The two-part feature, co-produced by Discovery and BRTV, gives audiences a behind the scenes look at the massive project to create the opening spectacle for Olympic Winter Games Beijing 2022. It offers a glimpse into the challenges faced by Zhang Yimou and his hand-picked team as they race to produce a slate of complex performances armed with some of China’s most cutting-edge technology. From the design, testing and creation of the iconic displays, including the Olympic Rings reveal, to the arrival and presentation of the Olympic torch and the famous fireworks displays of artist Cai Guoqiang, audiences will be immersed into the lives of the key figures behind the global spectacle.

Largely set in Beijing’s Bird’s nest and in secretive testing facilities around the country, the work behind the Opening Ceremony is told through the eyes of several key figures, and centered around personal interviews with Director, Zhang Yimou. Viewers get an insight into the mammoth three-year task to deliver a one-night spectacle, with the additional pressure of the Covid-19 global pandemic.

Vikram Channa, VP – Head of Content and Products, Discovery Greater China and Southeast Asia, said: “Behind the Opening Ceremony: The Director’s Cut gives audiences a new perspective into the Opening Ceremony of Beijing 2022. With personal stories, never-before-seen footage and rare access to Zhang Yimou, audiences are immersed into the joys and challenges of creating a showcase global event enjoyed by millions. Original stories continue to be a focus for Discovery, and we’re thrilled to bring this unique documentary from Asia to our audiences.”

Behind the Opening Ceremony: The Director’s Cut is produced by Beijing Radio & Television Station (BRTV) and Discovery, Inc. For BRTV, Executive Producer is Qin Lei and for Discovery, Executive Producer is Vikram Channa.  

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