For National Geographic Channels, Earth Day on April 22 is like the Super Bowl of natural-history programming, and the channels plan to celebrate the day with two world premieres as well as a campaign that is running across several Disney-owned platforms, including Disney Channels, Disney+ and Hulu.

“The need to protect our planet has never been more urgent, and we’re using Earth Day 50th as an opportunity to inspire viewers through the wonders of our planet and its incredible species for viewers around the world,” said Courteney Monroe, president, National Geographic Global Television Networks, in a statement. “With the Earth Day takeover across all of our networks and platforms, we are able to reach the largest audience possible to celebrate this momentous day and ensure that viewers fall in love with our planet and act to protect it.”

The two global premieres will run on both Nat Geo and Nat Geo Wild: Born Wild: The Next Generation, hosted by ABC News’ Robin Roberts, at 8/7 c.; followed by Jane Goodall: The Hope at 9/8 c. Both of these will air globally on National Geographic in 172 countries and 43 languages.

A selection of the very best of Nat Geo’s natural history programming will lead into primetime, including recent feature documentaries such as Jane and Before the Flood; an array of Destination Wild natural-history specials; and Joel Sartore’s Photo Ark: Rarest Creatures. Throughout the day, additional featurettes will showcase National Geographic Explorers and photographers working around the world.

The overall campaign is anchored across all of Disney’s platforms with a flora-and-fauna-inspired brand design that was done in-house by Mariano Barreiro, Nat Geo’s director of branding and creative services in Brazil.

From a messaging point of view, the campaign started as one of connectivity and conservation. But considering the current state of the world, the team decided to move off that and on to one of hope and inspiration. That required them to quickly make several changes to the overall campaign while the entire team worked remotely.

“As things developed, we realized that connecting, at least temporarily, is a bad thing,” said Erin Newsome, creative director at Nat Geo Channel. “The way we were talking about Earth Day felt like it wasn’t going to resonate in the same way it otherwise might have and it might have even turned people off. We decided to pivot from a message of connectivity to one inspiration and hope.”

“Our original thought back in the day was that we were going to talk about endangered species and a campaign around saving them,” said Chris Spencer, EVP, creative, Nat Geo Channel. “As noble as that is, during the pandemic it started to sound tone deaf. So we shifted to a message of storytelling and hope. We don’t want people to stop looking at the world as a wonderful place, but we also had to acknowledge where we all are right now.”

Beyond the television programming, Nat Geo also is running Earth Day-related features in both National Geographic and National Geographic: Kids, and the brand has created a digital hub especially for kids at

The photography from the many spots Nat Geo created for the day reflects that the natural world remains a wonderful place, full of vast landscapes and varied creatures.

“At National Geographic, we are the people that love the world,” said Spencer. “We also want [our viewers] to fall in love with the world, so [we’re saying] ‘have a look at this and let us remind you that the world is still amazing, it is still the most incredible thing.’”

Born Wild: The Next Generation Event Sell

Executive Producer: Nicole Strong

Creative Director: Erin Newsome

Director, Branding + Creative Services: Mariano Barreiro

VP, Design: Brian Everett

EVP, Creative: Chris Spencer

Project Director: Leah Wojda

Agency: Fogo

Edit: Dave Gorrie

Dir, Project Management: AnChi Laster

Executive Producer: Jeffrey “Footy” Foot

Mix: Richard Humphries, Takoma Media

Footage: ABC News

VO: Robin Roberts

Earth Day Anthem :30

Associate Producer: Daniela Delgado

Project Manager: Leah Wojda

Creative Director: Erin Newsome

Director, Branding + Creative Services: Mariano Barreiro

VP, Design: Brian Everett

EVP, Creative: Chris Spencer

Agency: Ultrabland

Edit: Terry Boyer

Assistant Editor: Miles Flatt

Mix: Tyler Swafford

Graphics: Carlos Lopez Jr.

Producer: Corey Green

Jane Goodall: The Hope Event Sell

Executive Producer: Nicole Strong

VP, Creative: Tyler Korba

VP, Design: Brian Everett

EVP, Creative: Chris Spencer

Project Manager: Kendrah Polk

Agency: Ignition

Editor: Michael Daniele

Junior Producer: Tatiana Villegas

Producer: Matt Wizan

Creative Director: Wayne Watson

Music Director: Evelin Garcia

Assistant Editor: Alex Bacon

Conservation Pieces

Sr. Producer, Storytelling: Sarah Joseph

Producer, Storytelling: Megan King

Producer, Storytelling: Tyler Dinley

Executive Producer, Storytelling: Vanessa Serrao

Associate Producer, Storytelling: Sydney Guthrie

Sr. Director, Storytelling: Doug Bailey

Director, Branding + Creative Services: Mariano Barreiro

Project Director: Leah Wojda

Executive Producer: Nicole Strong

Creative Director: Erin Newsome

VP, Design: Brian Everett

EVP, Creative: Chris Spencer

Agency: AlterEgo

Senior Editors: Dave Nathan, Rory Sheridan

VP/Head of Production: Monesha Lever

Executive Creative Director: Heather Roymans

Associate Creative Director: Erica Kern

Writer/Producer: Kristen Edgell

Senior Editors: Dave Nathan, Rory Sheridan

Junior Editor: Hannah Testa

Sound Designer/Mixer: Tyler Proctor


Mariano Barreiro: Branding Director, National Geographic

Motion Design and production agency: Flopicco

Tags: disney earth day nat geo nat geo wild national geographic channel

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