Wild Scandinavia is a fresh three-part series on BBC Two that celebrates the breathtaking wildlife, dramatic landscapes, and distinct culture of the northernmost reaches of Europe. Produced by the BBC Studios Natural History Unit and co-developed with PBS and Sveriges Television (SVT), the series comprises three 60-minute episodes that plunge viewers into the world of Norse Gods like Odin and Thor. Each film delves into a distinct natural wonder: the eerily enchanting coast, the magical seasonal forests, and the extremes of volcanic and arctic landscapes.
Rebecca Ferguson, the Anglo-Swedish actor known for her roles in “Dune” and “Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation” and “Mission: Impossible Dead Reckoning Part One,” narrates the series. The narratives intertwine surprising tales of wildlife, featuring lynx, puffins, orcas, and wolves, with the experiences of the remarkable individuals who inhabit and explore this frigid wilderness.
The series unfolds with breathtaking visuals that depict stories of survival, ranging from the expansive Norwegian Arctic to the mythical Swedish and Finnish forests, along the vast tidal shores of Denmark, and amidst the eruptions of Icelandic volcanoes.
“Wild Scandinavia” presents the Nordic region in a never-before-seen light, employing cutting-edge technology such as fast FPV drone cameras chasing base jumpers into the fjords and high-speed cameras capturing giant sea eagles snatching fish from the water. State-of-the-art camera traps unveil the romantic pursuits of lynx, and super-macro filming documents spiders residing in volcanic hot springs, where one misstep could prove fatal.
In an interview with the narrator, Rebecca Ferguson delves into the captivating tales and immersive experiences that make “Wild Scandinavia” an unparalleled exploration of the region’s natural wonders.
Q. What made you want to be part of this series?
I was brought up having a magical connection to nature. When later introduced to the world of BBC wildlife programmes it brought back so much nostalgia. Being asked to be part of this series therefore was a huge honour for me.
Q. Tell us a bit about growing up in Scandinavia.
When I was growing up, I always wanted to go exploring in the woods and become one of my favourite childhoods characters Ronja from stories by Astrid Lindgren. She was a true representation of Swedish and Scandinavian nature. I also loved to do another tradition of picking wild strawberries and threading them through strains of straw.
Q. Tell us about your personal passion for Scandinavia
It’s Raw and wild. It’s Pinecones, mushroom picking, cold, mythical mysterious. So many tales and stories come from the world of Scandinavia.
Q. Describe any personal experiences you’ve had with wildlife in Scandinavia
It’s hard not to have connections with nature. For me it’s about feeling connected to it and being a part of it daily. I was brought up in Stockholm then moved to the south of Sweden to a remote fishing village, meaning I got to explore such drastic difference in environments and temperatures.
Q. Were there any standout or memorable sequences in the series for you?
Being a part of the whole story and seeing things that I would have never got the opportunity to see was such a treat. It brings me as close to it as possible. It’s so unusual to see it all first-hand and I got to be part of it adding my narrative which was magical. As an ocean lover, I particularly enjoyed the reproductive process of the synchronised star fish and watching the sea cucumbers feed on the algae and plankton from the seabeds.
Q. Did you learn anything new about Scandinavia that you didn’t know before narrating the series?
Yes! I couldn’t believe that they are still preserving fish the same way we did in the Viking times! It was fascinating to see that process.
Q. What do you believe is so captivating about this region?
The Landscape is the main characteristic, it’s sharp and harsh and the animals have had to learn to shape to their environment. The extreme difference between the North of Sweden with its angular landscapes to the south of Sweden with its rolling hillsides, orchards and apple trees.
Q. Do you have a favourite species from the series and why?
Yes! The White-Tailed Sea Eagle is my favourite species from the series. They are so majestic flying through the air. Their hunting skills of catching the fish is like watching a thrilling chase scene from a movie! It’s so highly skilled and chaotic at the same time.
Q. What do you hope viewers will take away from watching Wild Scandinavia?
I hope that they it will Learn about new environments and that it opens up their eyes to the beauty of this region. How different it is. Why it’s so different. How the people have had to adapt to the environment. The extremes of the seasonal weather and landscapes. I hope it makes people want to visit and to nurture and to care for our world even more.