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Cinema Verde: The New Green Giants Onscreen


It's not a slow news week when the top story is Paris Hilton getting out of jail; it just reflects how much priority our society places on entertainment and the cult of personality. But fortunately, this phenomenon is now a tool being used to help fight climate change.

Hollywood's “first green movie,” Evan Almighty, starring Steve Carell, might not actually be tinsel town’s premier green movie. The 2006 carbon-neutral indie flick, Sweet Land, starring Ned Beatty and Alan Cumming, comes out on DVD on July 10.

 

 

The somewhat-lackluster box-office performance of Evan Almighty isn't stopping environmentalists from reaching out to people in a way has them actually listening: by sending the message through famous people onscreen. Just in the past year or so we've had Al Gore's juggernaut that started it all, An Inconvenient Truth; green giant Leo DiCaprio's documentary 11th Hour; Over the Hedge, also starring Steve Carell (future green celeb?) as well as Bruce Willis, Garry Shandling and Wanda Sykes; March of the Penguins, and Global Cool, with Tony Blair, Heather Graham and Sienna Miller.

Now comes Arctic Tale, narrated by Queen Latifah, a documentary that follows a polar bear and a walrus throughout their lives as they are forced to adapt to a changing climate. And it's being backed up with a campaign from Starbucks beginning July 31. This sponsorship from a company long pinned as a corporate bully comes off a bit like dealing with the devil (just like every time I have one of the coffee giant’s delicious iced coffees with soy milk), but with Starbucks on your side, how can the message not get heard? Starbs will also play the soundtrack in-house, which includes new tracks from Brian Wilson and Aimee Mann, as well as songs by the Shins, Pearl Jam, Elvis Costello, Eric Clapton, and the biodiesel-ly-fueled Sheryl Crow.

And now that Paris is claiming that jail changed her and made her have deeper concerns beyond partying, maybe she’ll appear in the next environmental movie.