David Attenborough Biography, Age, Career, Marital Status, Salary and Net Worth

This article will answer every question you have about David Attenborough. Below are some of the frequently asked questions about him.

  1. What does David do for a living?
  2. Who are David’s parents and siblings?
  3. What are David’s interests and hobbies?
  4. Is David married or does he have a girlfriend/ boyfriend?
  5. Does David have any children?
  6. Where is David now?
  7. How tall is David?
  8. How much money does David earn?
  9. What is David’s net worth?

N/B: Please read the entire post to have all your questions answered.

Who is David Attenborough?

Sir David Frederick Attenborough is a remarkable English broadcaster, biologist, natural historian, and author. He is best known for writing and presenting, in conjunction with the BBC Natural History Unit. The nine natural history documentary series form the Life Collection, a comprehensive survey of animal and plant life on Earth.

At BBC, he was a senior manager, having served as controller of BBC Two and director of programming for BBC Television in the 1960s and 1970s. His filmography as a writer, presenter, and narrator spans eighty years. It includes; Zoo Quest, Natural World, Wildlife on One, the Planet Earth franchise, The Blue Planet, and Blue Planet II. He is the only person to have won BAFTA’s in all of the categories black and white, color, high-definition, 3D, and 4K resolutions.
His earlier work focused more on the wonders of the natural world. While his afterward work has been more vocal in support of environmental causes. David has supported restoring planetary biodiversity limiting population growth, switching to renewable energy, mitigating climate change, reducing meat consumption, and setting aside more areas for natural preservation.
NPR stated he “roamed the globe and shared his discoveries and enthusiasms with his patented semi-whisper way of narrating” regarding his broadcasting and passion for nature. He received Primetime Emmy Awards in 2018 and 2019, for Outstanding Narrator. In the UK, he has widely considered a national treasure although he does not like the term.

How Old is David Attenborough?

He is 95 years old as of March 2022. Having been born on May 8, 1986, in Isleworth, Middlesex, England. David shares his birthdate with celebrities such as; 6IX9INE, Trisha Paytas, Ethan Wacker, Stephen Amell, and many more.

David Attenborough Family

Who are David Attenborough’s Parents?

He was born to Frederick Attenborough (Father born on April 4, 1887, but died on March 20, 1973) was a British academic and principal of University College, Leicester. And Mary Attenborough (Mother was born in 1896 but died in 1961).

Does David Attenborough have Siblings?

He has two brothers. An elder brother by the name of Richard Attenborough (born on August 29, 1923, but died on August 24, 2014) was an English actor, filmmaker, and entrepreneur. And a younger brother by the name of John Attenborough (born on January 1, 1928, but died on November 9, 2012) was an English executive in the motor industry and then a financial advisor. Besides his two biological brothers, he has two foster sisters. Their names are Irene Beach (died in 1992) and Helga Beach (died in 2005)

David Attenborough Education

He received his education at Wyggeston Grammar School for Boys. Later he won a scholarship to Clare College, Cambridge in 1945 to study geology and zoology and obtained a degree in natural sciences. He also learned at the London School of Economics.

David Attenborough Marital Status

He is possibly single. However, he was previously married to Jane Elizabeth Ebsworth Oriel. They married in 1950 but his wife died on February 16, 1997.

A Photo of David Attenborough
A Photo of David Attenborough

David Attenborough Kids

He has two kids, a daughter by the name of Susan Attenborough. And a son by the name of Robert Attenborough is a senior lecturer and university professor.

David Attenborough Career

Career Early Years at BBC

After leaving the Navy, he took a position editing children’s science textbooks for a publishing company. In 1950, he applied for a job as a radio talk producer with the BBC. Although he was rejected for the job, his CV later attracted the interest of Mary Adams head of the Talks (factual broadcasting) department of the BBC’s fledgling television service. In 1952, he joined the BBC full-time after a three-month training course.

He became a producer for the Talks department. Some of his early roles included; the quiz show Animal, Vegetable, Mineral? and Song Hunter, a series about folk music presented by Alan Lomax. David’s association with natural history programs began when he produced and presented the three-part series Animal Patterns. Through this program, he met Jack Lester, and they decided to make a series about an animal-collecting expedition. Therefore, the result was Zoo Quest’s first broadcast in 1954, where Attenborough became the presenter at short notice due to Lester being taken ill.

The BBC Natural History Unit was formally established in 1957, in Bristol. When asked to join it, he declined not wishing to move from London where he and his young family were settled. He resigned from the permanent staff of the BBC in the early 1960s, to study for a postgraduate degree in social anthropology at the London School of Economics. Before he could finish his degree, he accepted an invitation to return to the BBC as controller of BBC Two.

A Career at BBC Administration

In March 1965, he became controller of BBC 2 succeeding Michael Peacock. Later that year, he filmed elephants in Tanzania and made a three-part series on the cultural history of the Indonesian island of Bali 1969. David joined the first Western expedition for the 1971 film A Blank on the Map to a remote highland valley in New Guinea to seek out a lost tribe.

In 1964, BBC Two was launched but had struggled to capture the public’s imagination. But after David’s arrival as controller, he quickly abolished the channel’s quirky kangaroo mascot and shook up the schedule. During his time, music, the arts, entertainment, archaeology, experimental comedy, travel, drama, sport, business, science, and natural history all found a place in the weekly schedules.

Career Continuation

He commissioned programs such as Man Alive, Call My Bluff, Chronicle, Match of the Day, The Old Grey Whistle Test, Monty Python’s Flying Circus, and The Money Programme. With the addition of color television, he brought a snooker to the BBC to show the benefits of the format as the sport uses colored balls. While in charge of BBC Two, David turned down Terry Wogan’s job application to be a presenter on the channel, stating that there weren’t any suitable vacancies. The channel already had an Irish announcer and in 2016, he reflected to have had two Irishmen presenting on BBC would look ridiculous.

In 1969, he was promoted to director of programs making him responsible for the output of both BBC channels. In 1972, when his name was being suggested as a candidate for the position of Director-General of the BBC, he phoned his brother Richard to confess that he had no appetite for the job. The following year, he left his post to return to full-time program-making. This left him free to write and present the planned natural history epic. After his resignation, he became a freelance broadcast and started work on his next project. A trip to Indonesia with a crew from the Natural History Unit.

Career Continuation

This resulted in the 1973 series Eastwards with Attenborough. Also that year, he was invited to deliver the Royal Institution Christmas Lecture on The Language of Animals. After his work on Eastwards with Attenborough, he began to work on the scripts for Life on Earth. Due to the scale of his ambition, the BBC decided to partner with an American network to secure the necessary funding. He worked on a number of other television projects while the negotiations were proceeding. These include; The Tribal Eye 1975, The Explorers 1975, and Fabulous Animals 1975.

A Career at Life Series

In 1979 beginning with Life on Earth, David set about creating a body of work that became a benchmark of quality in wildlife film-making and influenced a generation of documentary filmmakers. The series established many of the hallmarks of the BBC’s natural history output.

He and his production team gained the trust of scientists by treating his subject seriously and researching the latest discoveries. After the success of Life on Earth five years later, BBC released The Living Planet. This time, David built his series around the theme of ecology, the adaptations of living things to their environment. During the 1990s, he continued to use the “Life” title for a succession of authored documentaries. David presented Life in the Freezer in 1993, the first television series to survey the natural history of Antarctica.

Career Continuation

Although he had reached the normal retirement age he embarked on a number of more specialized surveys of the natural world beginning with plants. The result was The Private Life of Plants (1995). This showed plants as dynamic organisms by using time-lapse photography to speed up their growth and went on to earn a Peabody Award. At the BBC Natural History Unit, he was prompted by an enthusiastic ornithologist and he turned his attention to birds. As he was neither a bird expert nor a birdwatcher, he decided he was qualified to make The Life of Birds (1998). The following year in 1999, the documentary series won a second Peabody Award. Low-light and infrared cameras were deployed to reveal the behavior of nocturnal mammals for The Life of Mammals (2002).

The series included a number of memorable two shots of David and his subjects. This included; chimpanzees, a blue whale, and a grizzly bear. For the first time advances in macro photography made it possible to capture the natural behavior of very small creatures. In 2005 Life in the Undergrowth introduced audiences to the world of invertebrates. At this point, he realized he had spent 20 years and had made a collection on all major groups of animals and plants, but reptiles and amphibians were missing. Therefore, in 2008, Life in Cold Blood was broadcasted. Having been satisfied with his work, he brought together all his work in a DVD encyclopedia called Life on Land.

A Career Beyond Life on Earth

Alongside the “Life” series, he continued to work on other television documentaries mainly in the natural history genre. In 1987, he wrote and presented a series on man’s influence on the natural history of the Mediterranean Basin, The First Eden. Two years later, he demonstrated his passion for fossils in Lost Worlds, Vanished Lives. He worked on the BBC’s Prisoners of Conscience series in 1990, where he highlighted the case of Mahjoub Sharif.

Between 1997 and 2005, he narrated every episode of Wildlife on One a BBC One wildlife series that ran for 253 episodes. Alastair Fothergill was making The Blue Planet (2001) the Unit’s first comprehensive series on marine life. Due to difficulties in speaking to a camera through diving apparatus, Alastair asked Attenborough to narrate the films. The team reunited for Planet Earth (2006). This became the biggest nature documentary ever made for television and the first BBC wildlife series to be shot in high definition.

Career Continuation

The BBC commissioned David to provide a series of 20 ten-minute monologues in January 2009, covering the history of nature. Titled David Attenborough’s Life Stories, they were broadcast on Friday Nights on Radio 4. Alastair gave David a more prominent role in Frozen Planet in 2011. The corporation in October 2014, announced a trio of new one-off David’s documentaries as part of a raft of new natural history programs. Attenborough’s Paradise Birds and Attenborough’s Big Birds were shown on BBC Two while Walking Giants was shown on BBC One. In 2015, the BBC commissioned Atlantic Productions to make a three-part Attenborough fronted series Great Barrier Reef.

He has narrated three series of David Attenborough’s Natural Curiosities for the UKTV channel Watch, with the third series showing in 2015. In 2017, Blue Plane II was broadcasted with David returning as a presenter. The series was highly accredited and gained the highest UK viewing figure for 2017: 14.1 million. David narrated the 2018 five-part series Dynasties. And in 2021 presented the three-part series Attenborough’s Life in Colour and The Mating Game.

A Career as Environmentalist Advocacy

By the turn of the millennium, his authored documentaries were adopting a more overtly environmental stance. Including; Stae of the Planet (2000), The Truth about Climate Change (2006), and How Many People Can Live on Planet Earth? (2009). He narrated Our Planet in 2019 for Netflix an eight-part documentary series. Also, he narrated Wild Karnataka a documentary about the Karnataka forest area. In 2019, his one-off film documentary called Climate Change-The Facts was aired.

This evolves about climate change for BBC One. It was followed by Extinction: The Facts which is partly based on the 2019 IPBES report on the decline of biodiversity. In 2020, he narrated the documentary film David Attenborough: A Life on Our Planet. On October 4, 2020, it was released on Netflix. Other Netflix roles include Breaking Boundaries: The Science of Our Planet released on June 4, 2021. In Cambridge, he began filming for The Green Planet in October 2020. And in 2021, narrated for BBC One A Perfect Planet a five-part earth science series.

David Attenborough Height and Measurements

Adding up to his well-built body is a height of 5ft 10inches (1.78m) and a weight of 80kg (176lbs)

David Attenborough’s Salary and Net Worth

His salary is not indicated n the internet but his net worth is $35 million.