Submarine Mission Impossible

programmes  —  Submarine Mission Impossible

Submarine Mission Impossible – This is the gripping story of a submarine with an awesome history, thought lost forever…and the ambitious plans to raise her. It combines a hazardous underwater expedition, with the spine-tingling tale of one of the most audacious missions ever undertaken by a submarine.

Submarine Mission Impossible traces the incredible but true story of the submarine AE2 and her crew; combining a nail-biting dramatised account of their terrifying dive into enemy territory, with a modern-day scientific expedition to determine if the submarine can be saved – 92 years after being sunk in Turkish waters.

In April 1925, the Allies are poised to launch a major landing on the nearby Gallipoli peninsula. Their objective is to open up a new front and knock Turkey out of the war. Crucial to this plan, Lt. Commander Henry Stoker and the crew of AE2 are ordered to break through the heavily defended Dardanelles Straits and wreak havoc on Turkish supply supply lines.

It’s a mission many consider impossible. During the previous month, the Allied Fleet has tried to penetrate the Dardanelles, suffering heavy losses. In a victory celebrated in Turkey to this day, three Allied ships were sunk and nearly 700 men killed. Two submarines made attempts on the Straits but they failed disatrously. The exploits of AE2 over the five days of her mission are the stuff submarine legend, but amongst the blood and bungling of the Gallipoli campaign, her story went unreported.

On 30th April AE2 was sunk by cannon fire from a Turkish gunboat, never to be seen again…until now. AE2 was rediscovered in 1998 by a team of Turkish divers, lying in 75 metres of water on the bottom of the Sea of Marmara. After 90 years submerged in salterwater, she is clearly deteriorating. In 2007 an archaeological expedition was mounted to determine whether the corrosion and damage to AE2’s hull has passed the point of no return, or if she can be saved.

Rarely has such a detailed and complicated study been made of a wreck at this depth – and never on a WWI submarine. The vessel is the best preserved of its class anywhere in the world. It is also the largest intact relic of one of the most disastrous military campaigns of WWI – Gallipoli.

Mallinson Sadler Productions and Electric Pictures were granted exclusive access to an expedition that brought together some of the world’s most experienced technical divers, top marine archaeologists and passionate, high ranking submariners. Together, they photographed the wreck and made a complete archaeological surbey to assess its future.

Using high-end dramatic reconstruction and Computer Generated Imagery, AE2’s heroic passage through the heavily fortified Dardanelles is recreated alongside the present day, hazardous, high-tech expedition undertaken by divers working at the limits of human endurance.

Narrator
RUSSELL BOULTER

With special thanks to:

MARK SPENCER & BECCA SAUNDERS
SELÇUK KOLAY
DEFENCE SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY ORGANIZATION
ROYAL NAVY SUBMARINE MUSEUM
ANDREW SOLOMON
TURKISH INSTITUTE OF NAUTICAL ARCHAEOLOGY

FILMED WITH THE ASSISTANCE OF
THE SUBMARINE INSTITUTE OF AUSTRALIA
AND
AE2 COMMEMORATIVE FOUNDATION LIMITED

Archive libraries:
ABC LIBRARY SALES
AUSTRALIAN WAR MEMORIAL
DACRE C. STOKER COLLECTION
DAVID HILL COLLECTION
GETTY IMAGES
IMPERIAL WAR MUSEUM
NATIONAL ARMY MUSEUM NEW ZEALAND
ROYAL NAVY SUBMARINE MUSEUM
UK HYDROGRAPHIC OFFICE

Extracts from "STRAWS IN THE WIND" by Commander H. G. STOKER
Published by Herbert Jenkins, London, 1925.

Cast

Lt Commander Stoker – DAVID SMYTH

AE2 Crew
NICK BRITTON BRYN COLDRICK
WALTER HANNA TIM NOLAN JOHN ROBERTSON
BEN RUSSELL SCOTT SHERIDAN IAN TOYNE
CRAIG WILLIAMS

Director of Photography
Ian Batt

Underwater Photography
Dan Stevenson

Additional Underwater Photography
Norman Woods
Rick Ayrton

Editor
Nicholas Dunlop

Original Music Composed by
Ash Gibson-Greig

Production Manager
Rose Grandile (Australia)
Lea Aldridge (UK)

Script Editor
Paul Payne

Research
Greg Colgan (Australia)
Jude Cockburn-Campbell (Australia)
William Moult (UK)
John Chambers (UK)

Local Liaison (Turkey)
Savas Karakas

Sound Editor
Glenn Martin

Sound Mix
Ric Curtin

Production Designer
Emma Fletcher

Visual Effects Supervisor
Mike Dunn

Online Editor and Grade
Dean Edwards

Executive for MSP
Simon Mallinson

Executive Producers for ZDF
Christian Dieck
Martin Pieper

Executive Producer for ABC
Alan Erson

Executive Producer for ITV
James Garrett

Written and Directed by
Steve Westh

Produced by Crispin Sadler and Andrew Ogilvie

DEVELOPED AND PRODUCED WITH THE ASSISTANCE OF SCREENWEST AND LOTTERYWEST

PRINCIPAL INVESTOR
FILM FINANCE CORPORATION AUSTRALIA

COPRODUCED BY MALLINSON SADLER PRODUCTIONS
AND ELECTRIC PICTURES IN ASSOCIATION WITH
THE AUSTRALIAN BROADCASTING CORPORATION,
ITV,
ZDF, ARTE and ZDF ENTERPRISES

© 2008 Electric Pictures Pty Ltd, Mallinson Sadler Productions Limited,
Film Finance Corporation Australia Limited and ScreenWest Inc.
All Rights Reserved.

Use of drop camera to film inside of AE2
Interview with Morgyn Davies OBE MNI MIIS - Chief Salvage and Mooring Officer, Ministry of Defence.