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'Deadliest Catch' executive producer talks about the show's soaring sixth season

April 27, 2010 |  6:00 am

The sixth season of "Deadliest Catch" premiered on April 13 to its largest audience ever, and the show continues to perform strongly, as 12 million viewers have tuned in over two episodes to see, among other things, how Capt. Phil and Capt. Sig's  experiment trading junior deckhands turns out.

To be sure, the Discovery Channel hit has always been popular. But this season the series' life-or-death backdrop has taken an extraordinarily poignant turn with the death of one of the series' most popular fishermen. Capt. Phil Harris of the Cornelia Marie died unexpectedly on Feb. 9 while the final three episodes of the season were filming.  There will be a public memorial for Harris in Seattle on Friday.

In an interview in February, executive producer Thom Beers said the show plans to include Harris' collapse and hospitalization because Harris scribbled on a piece of paper to members of the production crew that "We gotta have a great ending to this story" before he died. Producers will work with the Harris family to determine which footage is appropriate. The producers are also planning a tribute.

Last week, Beers was in Beverly Hills for a Hollywood Radio and Television Society panel session. In the video above, he talked to The Times about the new season, Capt. Phil Harris, and the challenges his production company faces filming this high-seas and high-stakes adventure series. The video below is a preview of Tuesday night's episode.

-- Maria Elena Fernandez (Follow me on Twitter @writerchica)

Video credit: (top) Maria Elena Fernandez; (bottom) Discovery Networks


'Deadliest Catch' plans tribute to Capt. Phil Harris

The death of Capt. Phil Harris is met with tributes