Out of Europe - A New Story of Human Evolution?

52' / HD + 4K

For the last hundred years, the development of modern mankind was primarily explained through the so-called Out of Africa theory. But recent research is challenging the belief that the cradle of humankind was located in Africa. Various bone finds of extinct ape species, estimated to be roughly between 9 and 14 million years old, could be taken as an indicator that Europe has played a decisive role in early human evolution. They were found in an area spanning from present-day Spain all the way to Turkey, but had remained largely ignored by paleoanthropologists for decades. 

In Africa, on the contrary, comparable fossils are lacking completely. Right before humans and chimpanzees supposedly split from their last common ancestor, there is a several-million-year “fossil gap” on the continent, leaving room for speculations that “genuine Africans” such as chimps and gorillas have actually descended from European great apes before finding their way to Africa.

Now a research team has made a sensational discovery that is soon to be published in one of the world’s leading science journals. Does the history of human evolution have to be rewritten?

Producer: Bilderfest
Production year: 2018-2019
Broadcasters: SWR, arte
Languages: English, German, French