Animal Impossible: Tim Warwood and Adam Gendle's quest to find answers to nature's burning questions
Why do cats always land on their feet? Could a squid actually sink a ship? Is spider silk really stronger than steel? If these questions pique your curiosity, there might be a solution to it. Animal Impossible, a highly-entertaining series shows TV actors and best friends Tim Warwood and Adam Gendle, who embark on a dangerous journey to uncover the mysterious truth about animals. Set in various regions across the globe, the ten-episode show offers a fresh take on natural history filmmaking, where the presenters go to great lengths (think swimming with sharks) to get the answers. We catch up with Tim and Adam, who share with us their exciting adventures, life-risking stunts and cool facts they learned along the way.
Excerpts from the interview:
What are the pros and cons of doing a show like this?
Time Warwood: For me, the only con was being away from my family because I have three little children and it was just quite hard to be away for them on the filming trips. But the pros far outweigh the cons because it's an incredible experience to travel the globe, meet so many people and be in the company of such amazing animals- the white sharks, lions, squids, eels etc. It’s just mind-blowing to be at these locations and be put in a situation where it really, I would say, is a once in a lifetime experience. And to do it with your best mate just makes it even better.
Adam Gendle: Sometimes when you look at the schedule and see where you're going next, you cannot believe that you are going to do these things. You kind of think that this is the best job in the world. But then, the overall fatigue and relentlessness of the travel were sometimes quite tiring. We would go on a trip for three weeks, come back for one or two days, and then we would go again, every time with a different team. Often Tim and I were the ones that were constant.
How is this show different from other natural history shows?
Tim: It's different because it's looking at the natural world from a different point of view. The show explores the facts that everybody believes to be true. For example, do cats always land on their feet? We go on a journey of discovery to find it. And in that journey, we find that so many more cool, amazing things about those animals.
What were the most challenging stunts you two performed?
Tim: I think the big one for me was being dangled by spider silk trying to either prove or disprove whether it is indeed stronger than steel. It was a leap of faith. You just have to trust the science and the experts.
Adam: For me, it was swimming with a great white shark. I think just mentally, it was quite draining because I was thinking about it for months before we did it. When we finally got to South Africa, we stayed there for 12 days. The whole time, we were learning about sharks, looking at sharks or dreaming about sharks. And that took over my brain for a while. All this for the big moment when I was going to be in the water for a couple of minutes. I think it was all worth it as it is something that I'll never forget.
What was your favourite animal fact from the series?
Tim: I like the fact that spiders produce an average of seven different types of silk, for building different parts of the web. And that it never runs out! Also, keep your eye out for what the Cichlid fish does in Germany. The thing just looks like a goldfish, but what we discover it can do will blow your mind!
What was it like working with your best friend on this series?
Tim: Terrible. I did this show to get away from my wife but ended up being forced to spend the whole time with him. Just kidding! It was great to have Gendle there. Sometimes when the experts tell us that everything will be ok, even though they are the experts with all the experience, sometimes you just need the ‘it’ll be alright mate’ from your bestie.
Adam: We’ve known each other all our lives and had some incredible times but I think this year it has been on another level. It’s nice to have your best mate there just so you can say “Can you believe we’re doing this!?” And in the moments where one of us was petrified, the other always made a joke, which kind of help sometimes.
Have you visited India? If yes, how was the experience?
Tim: We had gone to Mumbai and had amazing food, it was brilliant. Thinking of all the animals in India that you could film, it'd definitely be a place that was fitting quite well with Animal Impossible. Hopefully, we will get to go there soon. Mumbai was unbelievable because I've never seen anything so busy- the light in the evenings and the colours, it makes it such a beautiful place to shoot, and would look amazing in the show. It'd be really nice to go back.
Catch Animal Impossible on Friday, 9 pm at Sony BBC Earth