If you’re like me, you’ve been paying pretty close attention to the situation with the Somali pirates who attacked the Maersk Alabama, made off with the ship’s captain, Richard Phillips, and held him hostage for the last five days. Then, within the last 24 hours, the standoff ended in dramatic fashion with the sniping of the three remaining pirates by U.S. Navy SEALs and the rescue at sea of the captain at sea. Pretty heady and amazing stuff. Now in typical American fashion, the book deal and the Movie of the Week will probably be completed within the next year or so. But Spike isn’t waiting that long. On the heels of that dramatic rescue, the TV station for guys has secured a deal for a pilot for Pirate Hunters: USN, a documentary series from 44 Blue Productions (The True Story of Black Hawk Down).
Pirate Hunters: USN will focus on the US Navy’s antipiracy operations in the Gulf of Aden. The show will be conducted via cameras to be placed on both the USS Boxer and USS San Antonio, the former of which is the lead ship in the multinational antipiracy efforts gearing up in the region. Doubtless Rasha Drachkovitch, the president of 44 Blue, wasn’t also checking out the events with baited breath: “We didn’t know whether it would put the kibosh on things or accelerate
things,” Drachkovitch said. “But the Navy reps told us, ‘This is
incredible timing for you guys. You’re going to get a front-row seat in
our response.’ “
Doubtful that the production company already had any cameras set up on the latest happenings, but there’s certainly enough footage from other sources to get a pretty interesting pilot made. And if people will watch season after season of crab fisherman (that’d be me, FYI), the hunting of real pirates by the US military in an ongoing international hot-button topic is a fairly solid ratings lock.