Odyssey Marine searches will be subject of TV specials

By Ivan Penn - Tampa Bay Times

Although Odyssey Marine Exploration hasn't always been able to capitalize on treasures it pulled from the bottom of the sea, the Tampa outfit is hoping its adventures are more successful on air.

An Emmy Award-winning video production crew will travel aboard Odyssey's ships in June to film the company as it searches three shipwrecks for sunken treasure. The footage will air as three one-hour television shows.

Odyssey's adventures to date have proved good source material for a Hollywood drama: hundreds of millions in gold and silver pulled from the Atlantic Ocean; international political intrigue involving the Kingdom of Spain, the U.S. State Department and a multimillion-dollar painting stolen by the Nazis; and treasure troves with nicknames like "Black Swan."

The company announced the planned TV miniseries that it is filming with JWM Productions, which has produced shows for National Geographic and PBS, during its corporate earnings conference call Friday.

"After the recovery work … you'll have a front-row seat for all of the action, as camera crews are presently aboard and are filming for three one-hour television specials," said Mark Gordon, Odyssey's president and chief operating officer, during the conference call.

The company did not offer further details about the television program.

But Gordon said he expects this year to mark a substantial shift in the company's financial operations because of three salvage projects that will be the subject of the TV shows.

"One of Odyssey's goals is to share the excitement, stories and knowledge we gain from our shipwreck projects with the general public, and television programming is a great way to do that," said Liz Shows, an Odyssey spokeswoman.


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