Discovery Launches Viewers to the Edge of the Solar System for Historic First Mission and Epic Close Up of the Former Ninth Planet in PLUTO: FIRST ENCOUNTER, July 15

— June 18, 2015

– From the makers of LANDING ON A COMET: ROSETTA MISSION, the new one-hour special follows NASA on the first encounter to the hotly debated former planet –
– Discovery’s Dr. Dan Riskin anchors from mission central in Maryland –
– Produced by Canada’s Exploration Production Inc., PLUTO: FIRST ENCOUNTER to air across Discovery International networks in dozens of countries around the world –

“Pluto is an outlier in every sense of the word. It has a tilted orbit, a giant moon locked into a static spot in the sky, and four more exotic moons spinning around in chaos. Everything we know about Pluto is already super-weird, and we haven’t even seen it up close yet. This is going to be amazing.”

– Dr. Dan Riskin, Anchor, PLUTO: FIRST ENCOUNTER and Co-Host of DAILY PLANET on Discovery


PLUTO: FIRST ENCOUNTER: All-new special from inside the NASA-led mission to Pluto, July 15 on Discovery.

To tweet this release:   TORONTO (June 18, 2015) – Moving at breakneck speeds to the edge of the solar system for nearly a decade, the mission to Pluto is less than a month away from mankind’s closest approach to the mysterious and contentious dwarf planet. Discovery’s PLUTO: FIRST ENCOUNTER joins the New Horizons’ epic quest led by NASA as the spacecraft completes its flyby, capturing first-ever images of the icy dwarf planet and its moons. The one-hour special, produced by Canada’s Exploration Production Inc. (EPI), premieres Wednesday, July 15 at 7 p.m. ET/4 p.m. PT on Discovery, hours after NASA’s first images of the extraordinary historic encounter are released. Anchored by DAILY PLANET co-host Dr. Dan Riskin from mission central in Maryland, the special chronicles the journey that will bring the former ninth planet into focus. Could this encounter reignite the debate over Pluto’s planetary status or will seeing Pluto up close give greater importance to dwarf planets spinning  at the edge of the solar system five billion kilometres away? This dramatic mission will shed new light on the former ninth planet, promising fresh clues about the birth of our solar system and perhaps life on earth. Following its world premiere in Canada, PLUTO: FIRST ENCOUNTER will air around the world on Discovery International networks, including Eastern, Central, and Western Europe, the U.K., Scandinavia, the Middle-East and Africa, China, India, South and Central Asia, Australia, South America, and the U.S. Viewers are invited to follow Pluto’s progress via and through social platforms using #PlutoFlyBy. **Media Note** Photography for PLUTO: FIRST ENCOUNTER available online at  

is a chance at solving a mystery – an outcome that might give new understanding of Pluto’s relevance in the solar system and potentially life on earth. NASA’s New Horizons mission launched in 2006, a piano-sized spacecraft that became the fastest ever launched, reaching the moon in just nine hours – ten times faster than any Apollo mission. The hurtling craft reached Jupiter in slightly more than a year when other missions took more than six. For nearly a decade, New Horizons has been travelling at breakneck speeds, racing to the very edges of the solar system to a region of space known as the Kuiper Belt, where the icy relics of the solar system drift. These relics, thought to carry the beginnings of life, provide clues to how the solar system’s bigger planets formed. Viewers will be presented with opinions and perspectives from those who are steadfast in championing Pluto as a ninth planet, as well as those staunchly opposed.

This latest special follows the 2014 success of EPI’s LANDING ON A COMET: ROSETTA MISSION, which attracted 381,000 viewers, making it the #1 specialty program in its timeslot. Prior to this new special broadcast, Discovery Science will feature an encore broadcast of LANDING ON A COMET: ROSETTA MISSION on Sunday, June 21 at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT.

PLUTO: FIRST ENCOUNTER is executive produced by Kelly McKeown for EPI. Producer and Director is Shelley Ayres; Senior Producer is Cindy Bahadur; and Supervising Producer is Agatha Rachpaul.

About EPI:

Discovery Canada’s in-house production company, Exploration Production Inc. (EPI), is a multi-award-winning producer of ambitious, original, entertaining factual documentaries and series, for both Discovery and other international broadcasters. By the end of 2015, EPI will have delivered more than 3000 hours of television programming in the form of a daily science magazine show, series, and specials. EPI programming has been broadcast in more than 150 countries, in two-dozen languages, to potential viewing audiences of more than 600 million conventional, cable and satellite subscribers. EPI is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Discovery Canada, a joint-venture between Bell Media (Canada) and Discovery Communications Inc. Visit for more information.

About Discovery:
The world is just awesome! With compelling real-life programming that inspires and entertains, Discovery reveals the world in all its wonder, diversity and amazement. As Canada’s #1 entertainment specialty channel, Discovery offers a signature mix of adrenaline-charged stories, larger-than-life personalities and vivid imagery for viewers with curious minds. With the best non-fiction programming from Canada and around the world, Discovery captures the excitement of a passion for life – one lived fully and at its most extreme. With exceptional and immersive storytelling, the channel offers in-depth, behind-the-scenes glimpses at the extraordinary people and places that shape our world. Launched in Canada in 1995, Discovery is now available in more than eight million Canadian homes. Discovery is offered in standard definition (SD) and high definition (HD) simulcast – for viewers who want an even bigger and bolder experience. Discovery Canada is a joint venture between Bell Media, which is owned by BCE Inc. (TSX, NYSE: BCE), Canada’s largest communications company, and Discovery Communications Inc. Find more information and interactive online features at

Source: Numeris (BBM Canada)


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