New Head of Natural History Unit at BBC Studios


LONDON: Julian Hector, a seasoned editor and producer for TV, radio and digital platforms, has been appointed as BBC Studios’ head of the Natural History Unit (NHU).

In his new position, Hector will work under Lisa Opie, BBC Studios’ director of factual. He will oversee global brands and content across all platforms, setting and delivering the NHU’s creative and business strategy.

Hector began his natural-history career at the NHU, producing such television series as Battle of the Sexes and Wild Africa, and Slaves to Nature for radio. As editor of Natural History Radio, he led the development and production of a number of hit programs, including Tweet of the Day, World on the Move, Saving Species and Migration. He later became an executive producer for TV, with Ivory Wars and Tigers About the House among his credits.

Hector commented: “This is such an important time to lead the Natural History Unit. We thrill our audiences with the extreme close-up and immerse them in the wonderful world of nature; and with people and nature ever more challenged to share the same space on Earth, it has never been more important to tell stories of that relationship.”

It was also announced that Oliver Thompson is taking on an expanded role as head of business at NHU, working with Hector. Thompson has managed creative businesses, post-production facilities and drove innovation across BBC production. He currently serves as head of production for factual in Bristol.

Thompson noted: “The launch of BBC Studios means the NHU is at a critical point in its evolution and we need to create the right environment for our creative and business teams to thrive. This presents a huge opportunity for us to bring our world-class content to new customers and new platforms, and deliver value back to BBC license-fee payers.”

Opie added: “I’m delighted that the world-class credibility and heritage of the Natural History Unit is in such strong hands. Julian brings passion, vision and vast experience to the unit. Oli will drive the business through this important and challenging transition into the competitive market. Together they’ll make a powerful team.”