What is it with polar bears that turns people into shameless liars and frauds. From the myth that the poleys are becoming extinct to now the BBC using faked footage of them allegedly in their natural environs? I guess the BBC is used to just making things up.
Dramatic footage of a polar bear tending her newborn cubs in the flagship BBC show Frozen Planet was filmed in a Dutch zoo using fake snow.
In one of the most engaging moments of its Winter episode, the tiny bears are shown mewling at their mother and nuzzling her for milk.
Eight million viewers were led to believe the scene had been captured by BBC cameramen inside an underground cave in the brutal sub-zero temperatures of the Arctic wilderness.
But the footage, narrated by Sir David Attenborough, and interspersed with real shots of the Arctic, was in fact filmed in a den made of plaster and wood in a wildlife enclosure.The truth behind the fakery is only revealed in a hard-to-find video among 14 other clips accompanying the Winter episode of the series on the BBC website.
John Whittingdale MP, chairman of the Commons culture, media and sports committee, said it was ‘hugely disappointing’ viewers were misled.
BBC editorial guidelines on wildlife programmes say that when it is impractical or unsafe to film something in the wild ‘it can be editorially and ethically justified to use captive animals’.
The guidelines add: ‘But we must never claim that such sequences were shot in the actual location depicted in the film.’