Cocos: Island of Sharks

December 15th, 1997 - September 30th, 2001 | PROJECT

The NOVA Large-format Film unit of the WGBH Educational Foundation, in conjunction with the New England Aquarium, is producing a large format film about Cocos Island, a small, uninhabited island off the coast of Costa Rica that has not yet been affected by human activity. The waters around Cocos Island contain an extraordinary abundance of sharks, rays, tuna, marlins, swordfish, and other pelagic fishes, thanks to nearby upwellings of cold, nutrient-rich water that create a rich food source. The film will focus on the physical oceanography and behavioral marine ecology of Cocos Island, highlighting the animal behavior and interactions of the wide diversity of marine life. Executive Producer will be Paula Apsell, head of the WGBH science unit and Executive Producer of NOVA. Susanne Simpson, executive producer for NOVA Large-format Films will as a senior producer. Howard Hall Productions will produce and direct the film. Howard Hall will be director/producer, and Michele Hall will serve as producer. The Halls are experts in the field of marine natural history filmmaking and are world-renowned for their television programs on such series as National Geographic and Nature. They worked in the large format medium as producer/directors of Into the Deep. Joseph Levine, a marine biologist who has written both science textbooks and television scripts, will be the writer. William Spitzer, Associate Director for Education at the New England Aquarium, will be responsible for the educational outreach materials.

Project Website(s)

(no project website provided)

Project Products

Summative Evaluation of "Island of the Sharks"

Team Members

Paula Apsell, Principal Investigator, WGBH
Susanne Simpson, Co-Principal Investigator, WGBH
Jerry Schubel, Co-Principal Investigator, New England Aquarium
Kenneth Mallory, Co-Principal Investigator, WGBH
Barbara Flagg, Evaluator, Multimedia Research


Funding Source: NSF
Funding Program: ISE/AISL
Award Number: 9725449
Funding Amount: $1,850,000


Audience: General Public | Museum | ISE Professionals
Discipline: Ecology | forestry | agriculture | Geoscience and geography | Life science
Resource Type: Project Descriptions
Environment Type: Films and IMAX | Media and Technology