ZDF Studios launches stunning new Gruppe 5 documentary 'Tepui - Into The House Of Gods'

Mainz, April 3rd, 2024

ZDF Studios today announced the completion and sales start at the upcoming MIPTV of a very elaborate expedition documentary. After several years of preparation and a very challenging path, exciting scientific findings will be revealed in this production.

Tepui - Into The House of Gods (1 x 50’) is a fascinating new documentary taking viewers on a journey to a forgotten world isolated for millions of years - the tabletop mountains in southern Venezuela.

The one-parter is produced by Gruppe 5 Filmproduktion, a ZDF Studios subsidiary, for ZDF’s renowned Terra X-slot in association with ARTE and ZDF Studios who will also handle global sales.

Nikolas Huelbusch, Director Unscripted, ZDF Studios said: ”Our affiliate, Gruppe 5, has done an exceptional job in capturing the uniqueness of the Tepuis. Not only do we get a rare opportunity to see the beauty of these mountains, but the documentary also makes new discoveries including one that may hold the key to tackling a global problem.”

The ‘Tepuis’, which means ‘House of Gods’, are revered by the indigenous people in southern Venezuela. Scientists see them as ‘islands of time’, and an international and interdisciplinary research team, including a geologist, microbiologist, bioacoustician, and a biologist, set out on a dangerous expedition to investigate life on one of the most remote and largest mountains.

The team explores whether the primaeval microbes that built elaborate rock foundations in an extensive cave system could be used for medical purposes. Can the bacteria produce substances that would assist in developing new types of antibiotics and thereby saving millions of lives? 

They discover a carnivorous aquatic cicada believed to be a new mutation of a similar species that inhabit the surface of the Tepuis but only feed on plants. Another important find is proof that the peculiar guácharo birds, which nest in caves in large parts of South America, have developed completely new behaviours on the Tepui: they build their nests on the ground instead of on higher cave ledges. The diversity of plants and animals are also documented as the researchers consider how the country could promote nature conservation.

Tepui - Into The House of Gods is a thrilling adventure to the islands of time, one of the most spectacular places on Earth.


About ZDF Studios
ZDF Studios is a commercial subsidiary of ZDF, one of the largest TV broadcasters in Europe. Founded in 1993 and headquartered in Mainz, Germany, the ZDF Studios Group operates more than 30 direct and indirect subsidiaries and affiliates in Germany, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom spanning TV production, distribution and services. The parent company, ZDF Studios, is responsible for global programme distribution, realisation of international co-productions, acquisition of licences and merchandising of successful programme brands under its own name, for ZDF and third parties. ZDF Studios has the largest German-language programme inventory in the world and a constantly growing range of international productions, consisting of series and mini-series, television films, documentaries and children's programmes.

The companies of the ZDF Studios Group cover the entire value chain from the development of scripted and unscripted TV content to production, marketing and monetizing, including TV and streaming licences as well as merchandising and online rights. The positioning of ZDF Studios as an integrated media company enables the development of innovative, outstanding and high-quality programmes and makes the Group an attractive workplace for German and international talent to flourish in a very inspiring and creative environment.

Contact ZDF Studios
Christine Denilauler (VP Marketing and Corporate Communications), ZDF Studios GmbH, Erich-Dombrowski-Str. 1, 55127 Mainz/Germany, Tel.: +49 6131-9911130, email: christine.denilauler@zdf-studios.com, www.zdf-studios.com