We've launched a "10-year Hollywood Cli-Fi movies initiative" to get the "cli-fi" term into the ears/eyes/minds of major Hollywood players: directors, producers, studio heads, actors, PR units, marketing units, film critics in Hollywood and nationwide, worldwide, casting people, scriptwriters, writers rooms and more.
See the initial concept here:
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So I'm launching a "10-year Hollywood Cli-Fi movies initiative" to get the "cli-fi" term into the ears eyes and minds of major Hollywood players. I need all the help I can get. via social media and this blog. Tweets, FB updates, emails to make cli-fi a genre term that everyone in Hollywood knows by 2030.
Cli-fi has already caught on in the book publishing world and among literary critics worldwide for novels and short story collections as A LITERARY TERM. This effort was ongoing since 2011 and got a huge boost in 2013 when NPR did a 5 minute radio broadcast titled "It's so hot, it's time for a new literary genre!" GOOGLE IT.
Now my focus for the next 10 years will be on Hollywood, and with the help of many people, cli-fi will catch on as cinema term among Hollywood producers, PR people, directors, actors, scriptwriters, talent agents, Hollywood journalists and film critics. We begin now.
A few notes of interest for your interest:
A few years ago, I was talking on the phone to veteran TV producer and social activist in Hollywood, Sonny Fox, and I was asking how him criptwriters and directors and producers in Los Angeles and other TV and film capitals around the world can make better use of their expertise and people to turn out more feature shows about climate change themes. Not documentaries, we have enough of them, good ones, too, but real movies, real TV serial dramas, written by people like Aaron Sorkin and produced by people like Marshall Herskovitz and, well, like veteran visionary Sonny Fox.
While Sonny is retired now at 94, he remains active as a passionate and concerned observer of where the world is headed, especially the world in this Age of Trump. He knows that runaway global warming is a serious issue and he knows that TV and movie producers have the means to address it.
"It's just a question of getting the right people together and setting up some organizations to work on this issue in Hollywood," the Brooklyn-born Fox tells me. And he's been arond the block a couple of times, many times, in Hollywood and New York. He knows what the game is all about.
Could we use serial dramas -- narrative TV shows -- for the primary purpose of entertainment that also inspires and educates people about climtae change themes through role modeling?Sonny says we can. And should.
There was a big wave of such interest back in the 1970s and 1980s that saw Fox, back then president of the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, teaming up with such figures as David Poindexter, Miguel Sabido, and Albert Bandura to basically turn the industry’s attention to teaching people about health issues and family planning through mainstream TV. They got involved with Everett Rogers and the three biggest TV networks in the U.S. to do this together with the Center for Disease Control, and their effort is still survived today by the organization Hollywood Health & Society which has a powerful advisory position to the Writer’s Guild of America.
So Sonny knows of what he speaks.
"It's important to get TV and movie people involved in climate change discussions," he says. "And to goad them into making TV shows and movies that go right to the heart of the matter: how will future generations fare in a world beset by dire climate situations worldwide -- doughts, floods, wildfires, sea level rise, heat waves."
Outside of Hollywood and New York, there are groups now in Vermont and China working on these concepts and trying to organize for actions to take, creative actions with movies and TV shows. Storytelling can work wonders. Story can capitivate the human imagination and push the emotional buttons that might result in civic action, at the voting booths and in local communities nationwide.
Then there was a fantastic interview with Marshall Herskovitz the TV and movie producer and writer, Brandeis alum, major Hollywood climate movie activist. Listen to him here:
Marshall Herskovitz is an important Hollywood player to watch. A producer, director and screenwriter who has also served as president of the Producers Guild of America (2006 – 2010) his credits include films such as “Traffic,” “The Last Samurai,” and “Blood Diamond,” and with his creative partner, Ed Zwick, he created the groundbreaking television series “thirtysomething,” “My So-Called Life,” and “Once And Again.” Alongside his career in the film industry, Herskovitz has devoted years to thinking about our society’s climate change problem.
"I first got into this more than 20 years ago, just by reading the science and getting really terrified. There was a big dividing line before and after “An Inconvenient Truth.” Before “Inconvenient Truth” the issue really was that people were not aware of climate change. After “Inconvenient Truth,” it became more complicated because people were aware of it, but it became much more politicized.," he told an interviewer iat City Atlas n 2015.
'So, before “Inconvenient Truth,” I was trying myself to put together a large communications campaign to get people aware of it, and I ended up through this weird, flukey thing, testifying in front of a committee in Congress. And basically what I was saying then is what I say now, which is that we are not even remotely on the right scale of what we need to be doing, and that we are all still in denial, and that, except for a small group of very vocal people, even among people who are really on board in terms of moving to combat climate change we aren’t really thinking about what we have to do. The only analogy for what we have to do is a World War Two-style mobilization.''
When asked if he thinks that Hollywood can create the narratives that needed to prod people to take action, Herskovitz said yes.
''Yes, we have the professionals who could do it. We have the professionals who could create the stories. Absolutely. ''
''I live in mass communications. I live or die by whether millions of people come and pay to see my product, and advertisers, the big advertising agencies, live or die by whether they get millions of people to respond, and that’s where the communications have to come from, and that costs a lot of money! Because you’re talking about television buys, and you’re talking about the kinds of marketing efforts that I’ve seen happen scores of times in my business. Where, for instance, we make a movie, nobody’s ever heard of that movie, you know? We then take 30, 40 million dollars and four weeks later, 96% of Americans know all about it. This is a very well established discipline, advertising and marketing, it just hasn’t been applied to this. So, that’s, to me, what still needs to be done. ''
''We are seeing that the tide is turning in America, there’s no question about it. There’s no question that a majority of Americans believe that one, climate change is real, two, it’s caused by humans, and three, that we need to do something about it.''
''I sort of keep track of these numbers, and basically, about 20-25% of Americans think it’s an emergency. And then there’s another 40% who think that we have to do something, but they don’t know what to do and they feel overwhelmed and so they don’t really deal with it in their lives. And then, on the other side, there’s another 35% who either don’t believe, don’t care, and a smaller percentage of them are actively opposed. But about 65% of Americans think we gotta do something, it’s just that we need a much bigger percentage of those people to become active. We have to make it possible for them to do something about it. Right now, they go, “It doesn’t matter what I do, you know? Even if America acts, what’s China gonna do? What’s India gonna do?” It’s changing that perception, and there are ways to do that. ''
''Most millennials grew up, I think, feeling like there were a lot of things in the world that were really awful that they couldn’t do anything about, and so many kids have said to me it’s so hard to see what the future’s going to be like, and there really wasn’t a belief that there was going to be a great future. And that’s upsetting. So, I wish I saw that zeal, that sense of omnipotence, that we are going to change the world, we are going to make the world do what we want it to do. I wish I saw that, because, boy that’s what we need. ''
Listen to Marshall Herskovitz.. He is on Twitter now at @MarshallHerskovitz
HIS CITY ATLAS INTERVIEW FROM 2015 is HERE:
THEN there's CNN producer and reporter Jen Christensen who wrote a very good piece on how cli-fi can make a difference in Hollywood, see link here:
Cli-fi (climate fiction) on the big screen changes minds about real climate change
ADDITIONAL INFO AND LINK HERE:
''Hollywood Takes on the Climate Crisis'': An Event That Took Place on November 19th 2019 with panelists Alex Maggio, Donte Clark, Dorothy Fortenberry, Glenn Howerton and others (see LINK and graphic for credits)
'The Commons' is an 8-part cli-fi drama series that depicts a climate-ravaged Australia of the not-so-distant future. Starts on Christmas Day 2019 in Australia. https://korgw101.blogspot.com/2019/10/maja-lunde-far-sin-del-av-ren-for-ha.html
OPED by Dan Bloom
Dear Hollywood Producers, Directors, Writers, Actors: It’s Time To Shed Some "Lights, Camera Action!" On Climate Change Issues, Too