WASHINGTON, March 20, 2015—A meaningful call to make the film industry more environmentally friendly, began last week at the Guadalajara International Film Festival (FICG), widely considered the most important film festival in Latin America, on its 30th anniversary.
Film4Climate, a global campaign spearheaded by the World Bank Group’s Connect4Climate initiative, is a commitment to develop a concrete plan to mitigate the environmental impact of film production as well as raise awareness about climate change through cinema.
Thanks to the partnership with the Guadalajara International Film Festival, on March 9-10, 2015, Film4Climate held screenings and panel discussions exploring the challenges, opportunities, and strategies to create a greener film industry. The discussion ignited concrete proposals for actions to reduce the environmental impact of film productions, and to raise awareness about climate change through films, including a “Film4Climate declaration” prepared and endorsed by a committee of Film4Climate representatives.
One proposed challenge would call on film institutes and commissions all over the world to allocate a percentage of their budgets to films that apply protocols that reduce the productions’ carbon footprint.
The forum featured presentations and remarks by several high-profile speakers representing the industry, such as: Ivan Trujillo Bolio, Director of FICG; Blanca Guerra, Actress and Director of the Mexican Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMACC); Eduardo Santana Castellón, Director of the Museum of Environmental Science of University of Guadalajara and Coordinator of the ‘Muestra de Cine Socio-Ambiental”, Donald Ranvaud, Creative Producer at Connect 4 Climate, Alfredo Cuarón, General Director at SACBE, Michael Geidel of Climate Media Factory’s Green Film Initiative, Maureen Prins, Founder of Solar World Cinema, Rodrigo Navarro Benítez, Journalist and Researcher, Alan Franey, Director of Programming at the Vancouver International Film Festival & Film Centre, Cristina Velasco, Director of Film Production Support at IMCINE, Carlos Gómez, General Director at EGEDA Mexico, Gustavo Ballesté, Director of Cinema Planeta, Storm Saulter, Actor and Filmmaker, Jemma Davis, Program Director at Creative Visions, Janet De Nardis, Artistic Director of the Rome Web Fest, Slater Jewell-Kemker, Filmmaker and Activist, and Mariana Díaz, Researcher at SACBE.
FICG’s commitment to an environmentally conscious film industry began seven years ago with the establishment of the “Muestra de Cine Socio-Ambiental”, (Socio-Environmental Film Exhibit) in collaboration with the University of Guadalajara Cultural Center, which featured around 100 environmental films in the last six years.
This year, the festival raised its commitment by insisting on climate-focused practices such as printing fewer materials and reducing the environmental impact of the event itself.
FICG Director Ivan Tujillo, who studied and practiced biology before directing the Mexican Film Archive and then the most important Film Festival in Latin America, renewed the invitation to host Film4Climate events next year:
“I have been wanting to create a strong space for environmental issues, particularly climate change, for the last few years but was not quite sure how to address the issue. The chemistry with the World Bank Group’s Connect4Climate initiative has been magnificent, and the response of filmmakers, institutions, and students is very rewarding and spurs us on to bigger things. We would love to screen the winning videos of the Action4Climate competition at FICG in Los Angeles next August, and we look forward to supporting other the expansion of Film4Climate during the year”.
Lucia Grenna, Program Manager at Connect4Climate, said “Cinema plays a fundamental role in raising awareness on social issues and delivering effective calls for action. We commend the partnership with the Guadalajara International Film Festival, and look forward to continue engaging the film industry in the climate change conversation”.
At FICG Connect4Climate also presented the winners of the Action4Climate film competition, which challenged young people around the world to tell personal stories of climate change. More than 230 filmmakers from 70 countries entered the competition. The winners were selected by an exceptional jury of internationally acclaimed film directors and international organization representatives presided over by Bernardo Bertolucci.
Film4Climate follow-up events and forums will be featured at other film festivals worldwide, including in the festival in Cannes, France, held May 13 – 25, 2015, with the goal of adopting industry-wide practices that are environmentally responsible.
Guadalajara International Film Festival (FICG) – 30th Anniversary
We, the participants of the Film4Climate Green Film Forum, co-hosted by Connect4Climate (C4C) and the Guadalajara International Film Festival (FICG30) on its 30th anniversary, wish to issue a declaration on the film industry commitment to social and environmental responsibility, including, but not limited, to biodiversity conservation, waste disposal, and climate change awareness and action.
This declaration will be followed by meetings with all film institutes and film commissions, and will see follow up events at the Cannes International Film Festival and elsewhere with the aim of establishing a decisive agreement on the road to COP 21 in Paris.
We commit to reduce, mitigate, compensate if necessary, and to try to eliminate the social and environmental negative impacts of film and media productions, and to strongly advocate for the adoption of industry-wide incentives to urgently encourage the adoption of socio-environmentally conscientious practices.
We would like to convene all the diverse initiatives for carbon footprint analysis in film productions to create a globally standardized and recognized protocol that will also preserve cultural and regional differences.
In this regards, we commend the excellent work already done in Europe, United States, and elsewhere to create free software to assess and analyze the carbon footprint during the entire life of productions.
March 12, 2015