As many in the region prepare for the warm summer months, Discovery will use its global reach to focus the world’s attention on the single greatest agent of death in modern human history: the mosquito. The
global crisis is highlighted in the worldwide premiere of the Discovery Impact film Mosquito, Thursday, 6 July at 21:50 Oman time, on Discovery Channel and Discovery networks around the world.
Recent news coverage around the globe has highlighted individual outbreaks of diseases such as Zika, malaria, West Nile virus, Yellow Fever, chikungunya, and dengue. But there is a bigger story to be told, one that
connects the dots between these diseases and reveals how a single force is driving them all: the unceasing, accelerating expansion of the mosquito around the globe, driven by factors such as increasing global travel and trade and a warmer world that is more hospitable to mosquitos.
Mosquito is a timely in depth look at this very tiny, very dangerous creature, and how it is changing in unpredictable and unprecedented ways. Narrated by Academy Award® nominated actor Jeremy Renner (“The Town,” “The Hurt Locker,”) the film chronicles the increasing global threat this tiny animal poses and the potential lethal ramifications without a worldwide coordinated effort. The film features interviews with leading experts including former CDC director Dr. Thomas Frieden and Bill Gates, co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation who points out that the resources required to fight an outbreak relative to the level of death that could result from a fatal pandemic makes this a clear global health priority.
“For more than 30 years, Discovery’s mission has been to ignite viewers’ curiosity, spark dialogue and encourage action on critical topics through our world-class storytelling and brands across 220 countries,” says David Zaslav, President and CEO of Discovery Communications. “Mosquito sounds a worldwide alarm about the need for bold steps to address this increasingly urgent threat. As a purpose-driven company, we are proud to leverage the strength of our unmatched television and digital services in all corners of the globe to call on citizens and worldwide leaders alike to act.”
“Discovery is at its best taking a global problem and showcasing its effects on individuals and their local communities,” says Rich Ross, Group President, Discovery, Animal Planet, Science Channel, and Velocity. “The spread of mosquito-borne illnesses in places they have never been has the potential to change the world as we know it. MOSQUITO shines a spotlight on this rapidly moving issue, giving audiences the tools to understand and prepare for a new world.”
Mosquitos kill more than 750,000 people a year, many of whom are children. Today, rapid environmental shifts like climate change and the ease of international travel for both humans and goods have only increased the threat mosquitos pose, hastening their spread around the globe. As deadly mosquitos are now reaching and surviving in places they have never – including Florida and Texas, and as far north as Washington D.C. and New York – they are bringing diseases like Zika, dengue, and yellow fever to uncharted and unprepared parts of the world. Shot on four continents, Mosquito weaves together expert interviews with the intimate stories of the men, women, and children who are living in fear that the next bite could be a deadly one.
Mosquito also spotlights the story of a Miami, Florida couple with a young daughter and another on the way. Scott and Lindsay Fuhrman have quarantined themselves in their home for fear of contracting Zika. “It’s summer in Miami and we are cooped up scared to go outside,” explains Lindsay. The family is frustrated feeling that their lawmakers have let them down. “Our government failed,” states Scott. “They thought this was a fantasy. We all saw it coming and they refused to help us.”
Most devastating is the story of a young mother from Brazil, Ane Júliana Araújo, who is caring for a baby born with Zika while fearing the disease may affect her unborn child. Former CDC director Dr. Thomas Frieden says in the film that, “There are so many diseases that can be spread by mosquitos. We are going to have to come up with new, better combined ways to stopping the mosquito to protect ourselves not just from Zika… but also whatever else might come next.”