SMITHSONIAN CHANNEL INVESTIGATES HOW TINY REPTILES CAN REVEAL BIG SECRETS ABOUT LIFE ON EARTH IN
LAWS OF THE LIZARD
THE GRAND HELIX AWARD-WINNING FILM WILL PREMIERE
WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 26 AT 8 PM ET/PT ON SMITHSONIAN CHANNEL
NEW YORK – November 26, 2018 – Biologists and wildlife filmmakers Nate Dappen and Neil Losin launch a year-long adventure in search of the secrets of an unassuming reptile in Smithsonian Channel’s LAWS OF THE LIZARD. Dappen and Losin travel to remote forests and tiny islands across the Caribbean and Latin America to uncover how a tiny reptile can reveal the fundamental rules of nature – what they call the “laws of the lizard.” Winner of the 2018 Jackson Hole Science Media Awards’ top prize, the Grand Helix, LAWS OF THE LIZARD will premiere on Wednesday, December 26 at 8 p.m. ET/PT on Smithsonian Channel.
LAWS OF THE LIZARD tells the story of this tiny six-inch lizard found across the American tropics. Along with Washington University professor and godfather of modern anole research Jonathan Losos, Dappen and Losin investigate the astonishing evolution of this tiny creature – how anoles have followed the same evolutionary paths in different ecosystems, the sheer speed at which anoles can evolve to thrive on fast-changing islands and the surprising adaptations they have used to conquer new environments – including one species’ never-before-filmed ability to breathe underwater. They also capture the first footage ever taken of a bizarre new species of anole discovered in the Dominican Republic.
Anoles are helping scientists answer questions they have been asking for generations: How do animals adapt to different environments, and how fast can evolution happen? With thousands of studies published in the last 50 years, anoles may be one of the most intensively studied wild animals in the world, and they are unlocking secrets to some of life’s biggest mysteries. LAWS OF THE LIZARD shows how the humble anole is helping scientists decipher the past, present and future of life on Earth.
“I always compare studying evolution to being like a detective story,” Losos says in the documentary. “We’ve got a whodunnit. What happened in the past? Why did it happen? We can’t go back in time. So we have to use whatever clues we have to piece it all together to figure out what happened in the past.”
LAWS OF THE LIZARD is produced by Nathan Dappen and Neil Losin of Day’s Edge Productions for Smithsonian Networks. Charles Poe and David Royle serve as executive producers for Smithsonian Channel.
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