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Discovery orders new 'Doing Da Vinci,' 'Destroyed in Seconds' series

By Christopher Rocchio, 07/31/2008 

Discovery Channel wants to show viewers how various Leonardo Da Vinci designs can be constructed and how man-made creations can be destroyed in seconds.

Discovery Channel has ordered Doing Da Vinci and Destroyed in Seconds, two new reality series from Dirty Jobs producer Craig Piligian, The Hollywood Reporter reported Thursday.

Doing Da Vinci is the working title for a Mythbusters-like reality series that will attempt to breathe life into Da Vinci's numerous engineering designs. The six-episode series is currently slated to premiere sometime next year, according to The Reporter.

"It's ingenuity under pressure and reaching for the impossible," Discovery executive Jeff Hasler told The Reporter. "It's right in keeping with our brand."

Each one-hour Doing Da Vinci episode will attempt to build two of the 15th century Italian artist's designs that are largely considered to be years ahead of his time, as his journals include the blueprints for everything from helicopters and tanks to calculators and ways to harvest solar energy, according to The Reporter.

"If Da Vinci had at his disposal the tools we have today, would the inventions work?" Piligian asked The Reporter. "How much of a genius was he really?"

Doing Da Vinci's design team will include a rocket scientist, a Hollywood special effects expert and an "everyday in-the-garage inventor," according to The Reporter, which added that -- although the team will use modern tools -- building materials will all be re-creations of what was available during Da Vinci's era.

Each half-hour episode of Destroyed in Seconds will feature video clips of disasters that annihilated various man-made creations -- ranging from the intentional implosion of Las Vegas' Dunes Hotel to a terror attack on an Israeli marketplace.  Each episode will conclude with the disaster being deconstructed to show how it happened.

"It's not a show that's going to focus on bad things," Hasler told The Reporter.  "It's a show that explains how these things happen."

Hosted by Fox Sports' Ron Pitts, the 12-episode series is scheduled to debut next month.

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