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Barry Paine obituary

18 November 2011 4:10 PM, PST | The Guardian - TV News | See recent The Guardian - TV News news »

Writer and narrator who was the voice of BBC natural history programmes

In 1983, Barry Paine, who has died aged 73 after suffering a stroke, became the voice of BBC Television's The Natural World. In doing so, he turned from writing and directing his own wildlife films to writing and narrating for others. He liked, as he put it, "to give a voice to the wild animals and plants that can't speak for themselves but require a medium for that message to be disseminated as widely as possible – to you and to me. That is really what wildlife broadcasting is all about."

This was a time when critics customarily suggested that viewers turn down the sound to watch the stunning sequences without words or music. The challenge for wildlife film-makers was clear: having spent months in the field, they had to return to base, supervise the edit and the post-production processes and, »

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2012 | 2011

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