Discovery gets aggressive for 'Space Station' launch

MARYLAND, VA: Discovery Communications is promoting the global broadcast premiere of Inside The Space Station by sending radio DJs to space camp, advertising on 3-D billboards and enlisting veteran journalist Walter Cronkite to host a press conference.

MARYLAND, VA: Discovery Communications is promoting the global broadcast premiere of Inside The Space Station by sending radio DJs to space camp, advertising on 3-D billboards and enlisting veteran journalist Walter Cronkite to host a press conference.

MARYLAND, VA: Discovery Communications is promoting the global broadcast premiere of Inside The Space Station by sending radio DJs to space camp, advertising on 3-D billboards and enlisting veteran journalist Walter Cronkite to host a press conference.

The documentary looks at how the space program plans to send the first-ever permanent human colony into space.

It will be shown in 150 countries and has involved six Discovery PR chiefs from around the continents. They are currently planning media relations strategy in conjunction with marketing and advertising colleagues.

The documentary was unveiled to overseas trade press at a TV trade event in Cannes last week and is being revealed to US reporters December 4.

Cronkite will host a panel discussion at the Washington Press Club, which will involve members of NASA and the European Space Agency.

Scheduled to broadcast on December 10, the PR team is hoping to capitalize on media interest in the space station, which will launch in November.

Petra Fioravanti, VP communications and public affairs, said the event was also being used to underline Discovery's positioning as 'the biggest real-world media and entertainment company.'

Fioravanti said that until now, Discovery had been something of 'a gentle giant' in terms of its positioning.

The event is unusual in that Discovery is the only international service pioneering global broadcasts, which unite viewers on the same night.

Previous Watch With The World specials have included Cleopatra's Palace and its highest-ever rating broadcast, Walking With Dinosaurs.

Discussing the logistics of the global PR plan, Fioravanti said that the UK had initially proved a problem, given that it is not involved in funding the space program. In that territory, the PR team is focusing attention on Space Games, an accompanying documentary that tells the story behind the funding for the international effort. Discovery has also signed up two global sponsors to the main event: BP Amoco and Sun Microsystems.





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