The Travel Channel Acquires Sender Films/Shankly Docu-Series First Ascent


11/1/10 - The Travel Channel has picked up groundbreaking documentary series "First Ascent" for U.S. television from adventure filmmakers Sender Films, marking the first series dedicated to rock climbing ever to be aired on U.S. television.

"First Ascent" will begin airing on The Travel Channel (95 million homes) on November 4 at 9 p.m. EST (7-9 MT) as four back-to-back episodes in a two-hour block, then will repeat immediately after. The entire six-episode series will be regularly scheduled through the remainder of 2010 and into next year.

A co-production with Sender Films and National Geographic International, "First Ascent" includes six wild episodes that tell the stories from the cutting edge of climbing. These episodes include Alex Honnold’s mind-blowing free-solo of Half Dome in Yosemite National Park, Dean Potter’s latest and wildest attempts to merge climbing and BASE jumping, and the tragic tale of Jonny Copp and Micah Dash’s final expedition to the big mountains of China.

"The series is our proudest achievement yet, a culmination of years of production, with story-telling and cinematography that take our work to a new level," said Nick Rosen of Sender Films. "It’s also the first of its kind to be broadcast on television worldwide."

According to Cathryn Garland, The Travel Channel’s Head of Acquisitions, “‘First Ascent’ is one of the most visually stunning, jaw-dropping adventure-travel series we’ve ever seen. We knew we had to have it.”

"First Ascent" has already aired in over 100 countries around the world, including on National Geographic Channels in Europe, Asia, and Latin America, BBC in Scandinavia, and Red Bull Media in Germany.

Peter Mortimer and Nick Rosen of Sender Films will be appearing on Last Call with Carson Daly on late Wednesday night, Nov 3, to promote the airing with a behind the scenes look at the "First Ascent" series. The complete First Ascent Series DVD Box Set is available at

About Sender Films: Sender Films is an award winning production company that creates world-renowned climbing/mountaineering and adventure sports films. The company balances action with story-telling, and spectacular footage with compelling characters to create critically acclaimed documentaries. Popular films such as The Sharp End and King Lines have sold tens of thousands of copies worldwide, garnered numerous international film festival awards, won a sports Emmy, and been hailed as groundbreaking films of their genre. Over the past couple years, Sender Films has produced the six-part series "First Ascent" with National Geographic International, as well as creating adventure film segments for US TV networks such as NBC, The Weather Channel, and Outside TV. Their shows have been met with critical and ratings successes, helping to prove that audiences are hungry for the emerging genre of cutting-edge climbing and adventure-sports content.