Brand new documentary JANE GOODALL: THE HOPE commemorates the 50th anniversary of Earth Day on National Geographic

15 April 2020

“Every individual matters. Every individual has a role to play. Every individual makes a difference.” 

— Dr. Jane Goodall


The Next Chapter of Dr. Jane Goodall’s Life’s Work Unfolds In JANE GOODALL: THE HOPE, Premiering Wednesday 22nd April, at 6.30pm on Nat Geo commercial free

In April 1970, millions of people around the world mobilised to demand protection of the planet we call home. That historic day gave birth to the modern environmental movement known as Earth Day, and 50 years later it’s become the planet’s largest civic event, with more than a billion people participating each year. On this momentous occasion, people worldwide would normally step outside to help clean up our planet, plant trees and restore the beauty of Earth. But this is not a normal year; this year is different — very different. While most of the world is stuck indoors, National Geographic is bringing the natural world inside to inspire hope and awe for the planet. 

At a time when people around our interconnected world needs hope more than ever, National Geographic commemorates Earth Day with three global, emotionally evocative specials that inspire hope for our dynamic planet, love for its animal inhabitants and actions of stewardship for this generation and those to come. 

Beginning at 6.30pm Wednesday April 22 on National Geographic, the two-hour documentary special JANE GOODALL: THE HOPE takes viewers through chapters of Dr. Goodall’s journey, highlighting how she inspires future generations. 

Also premiering in Earth Week, join National Geographic Photographer Joel Sartore on his quest to photograph some of the animals in the world in PHOTO ARK: RAREST CREATURES (Tuesday April 22, 6.30pm).

Then following at 7.30pm (Tuesday April 22, AEST), peer behind the camera to see what it takes to capture wildlife in their natural habitat with National Geographic Explorers-in-Residence Beverly and Dereck Joubert in OKAVANGO: RIVER OF DREAMS – Divine Journeys.

“The need to protect our planet has never been more urgent, and we’re using Earth Day 50th as an opportunity to inspire viewers through the wonders of our planet and its incredible species for viewers around the world,” said Courteney Monroe, president, National Geographic Global Television Networks. “With the Earth Day takeover across all of our networks and platforms, we are able to reach the largest audience possible to celebrate this momentous day and ensure that viewers fall in love with our planet and act to protect it.”

National Geographic’s Earth Day event also features the very best of natural-history programming, including recent feature documentaries such as JANE and BEFORE THE FLOOD; and the spectacular Save this Rhino and Sea of Shadows



Continuing the optimism of Earth Day is the two-hour documentary JANE GOODALL: THE HOPE, premiering at 6.30pm April 22 on National Geographic. The sweeping film highlights Dr. Goodall’s vast legacy of four decades, having transformed environmentalism, nonhuman animal welfare and conservation through her innovative approaches, and becoming a worldwide icon. This special depicts the formation of the Jane Goodall Institute’s (JGI’s) “Tacare” community centred conservation approach and Roots & Shoots youth-empowerment program; her remarkable advocacy and leadership on behalf of chimpanzees and humanity; and the next chapter for generations to come. This singular story is of one remarkable woman who not only hoped for a better world — she achieved it! 

“Being out in the forest of Gombe, I had a great sense of spiritual awareness; I began to realise that everything is interconnected,” said Goodall. “Since then, every day, it’s become clearer that climate change is an existential threat to our natural world, and if we destroy this world, we destroy our own future. Each day, every single person has the chance to make an impact through small, thoughtful choices, and when billions of people make the right choices, we start to transform the world. Don’t give up; there’s always a way forward.”

Picking up where National Geographic Documentary Films’ 2017 award-winning JANE left off, the two-hour special follows Goodall throughout her constant travels, capturing her relentless commitment and determination to spread a message of hope. The film offers an intimate perspective of Goodall’s pivotal transformation from scientist to inspirational activist and leader in holistic conservation. Featuring an extensive collection of photographs and footage that spans more than seven decades, the documentary illustrates how her passion for wildlife and unshakable drive has persevered, making her one of the most important figures in wildlife conservation and someone who has galvanized future generations to create lasting change.

Expanding upon Goodall’s past and highlighting the ways in which she has changed the world, the film features The Duke of Sussex, Prince Harry, who has been a leader in conservation and global environmental issues, and presents exclusive interviews with James Baker, former U.S. secretary of state, who received the first JGI International Conservation Award for his work with chimpanzees. It also features interviews with Dr. Richard Wrangham, a professor of biological anthropology at Harvard University, who founded the Kibale Chimpanzee Project; Dr. Francis Collins, director of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), who championed for the retirement of all government research chimpanzees from the NIH after speaking with Goodall; world-famous Dr. Robert Gallo, co-founder and director of the Institute of Human Virology, who co-discovered HIV, the cause of AIDS, in 1984; and many others.

JANE GOODALL: THE HOPE is produced by Lucky 8 for National Geographic in partnership with Dr. Jane Goodall and the staff of JGI. For Lucky 8, executive producers are Kim Woodard, Greg Henry, George Kralovansky and Isaac Holub. The special is produced and directed by Kim Woodard and Elizabeth Leiter. For National Geographic, executive producer is Tracy Rudolph Jackson, senior vice president of development and production is Janet Han Vissering, and executive vice president of global unscripted entertainment is Geoff Daniels. 

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 About Dr. Jane Goodall and the Jane Goodall Institute

Full Title: Dr. Jane Goodall, DBE, U.N. Messenger of Peace and Founder of the Jane Goodall Institute

From earliest childhood, Jane Goodall was fascinated by wildlife and Africa, inspired by the tales of Tarzan and Dr. Doolittle. In 1957, she pursued her dream and traveled to the Kenyan farm of a friend’s parents and met the famed anthropologist and palaeontologist Dr. Louis Leakey. In 1960, at his invitation, she began her landmark study of chimpanzee behaviour in what is now Gombe Stream National Park in Tanzania. At age 26, her discovery that chimpanzees make and use tools shook the foundations of modern science, revolutionised the world of primatology and redefined the relationship between humans and the rest of the animal kingdom. 

For over 40 years, she has been committed to using her voice to create positive change for people, other animals and the environment we share. As founder of the Jane Goodall Institute (JGI) global conservation nonprofit and Roots & Shoots youth-empowerment program, author, advocate and public speaker, she travels an average 300 days per year sharing her reasons for hope and message that we can each make a difference to create a better world for all, every single day. 

In 1977, she founded JGI to inspire hope through action around the world and for generations to come. JGI is a global community centred conservation organisation that advances Goodall’s vision and work. By protecting chimpanzees and other great apes through collaboration with local communities and the innovative use of science and technology, we improve the lives of people, other animals and the natural world we all share. JGI inspires hope through collective action and is growing the next generation of compassionate environmental stewards through its Roots & Shoots youth program, now active in 50 countries around the world. 


For more information about Goodall and the work of JGI, visit

Follow Jane and JGIA at and @janegoodallau on Instagram and Twitter. 




Adam Santarossa

PR Manager – ESPN Australia/New Zealand

PR Manager – National Geographic

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