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Documentary Captures 'March of the Penguins'

An amazing new nature film follows the epic journey of Emperor penguins across frozen landscapes as they migrate -- single-file -- to a familiar, yet mysterious destination. And at journey's end, life literally begins anew.

Luc Jacquet, an ecologist-turned-filmmaker, directed March of the Penguins. He and a film crew spent 13 months in Antarctica filming the penguins' breeding cycle.

Jacquet says he fell in love with the birds -- their robust white bellies, black coats, long beaks and the way they bob and sway as they walk -- on his first trip to Antartica in 1992.

With breathtaking photography, March of the Penguins illustrates just how far these animals walk to reach their destination -- a trip that takes about three months -- and to find a mate. Though the penguins make the remarkable journey year after year, scientists still aren't sure how they find their way.

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Corrected: March 14, 2006 at 5:02 PM EST
A physical description of a female penguin heard in the original audio for this story has been changed in the archived version. The penguin has a fur-like flap of feathers, but not actual fur.
Elizabeth Blair is a Peabody Award-winning senior producer/reporter on the Arts Desk of NPR News.