Magazine article Variety

Crews Wrestle with Dangerous Beast: Alaska

Magazine article Variety

Crews Wrestle with Dangerous Beast: Alaska

Article excerpt

Shows conquer weather, wildlife, isolation By Karen Idelson

Alaska is the sort of place that routinely crushes adventurers. The stabbing cold, the not-so-friendly wildlife and more test any outdoorsman's raw survival skills.

Yet Dorsey Pictures is shooting no fewer than three reality series in the Last Frontier: "Building Alaska," headed into season eight for DIY, plus "Living Alaska" and "Guiding Alaska" for Travel Channel.

The Denver-based company, long a mainstay in field sports production and wilderness filming, has a network of crews it can send to more than a dozen locations at any one time - a must since it has many adventure-based programs in production at once. Alaska, though, is "a beast unto itself," says John Burshtan, the company's VP of production, laughing.

The combination of aggressive animals, extreme weather and isolated locations make Alaska supremely difficult, Burshtan says. Fast-changing weather plays havoc with flight schedules, driving up costs and cutting shooting days. "You had better come there with some creative problem-solving in place," Burshtan says. "I always wish there was more wiggle room (in the budget). …

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