As Earth Day approaches, EarthxFilm will provide plenty of visual and educational treats — whether you opt to stay home and watch virtual, or attend outdoor and drive-in showings of the films the festival will offer.
EarthxFilm announced last week 10 days and nights of drive-in, outdoor and online screenings during this year’s hybrid edition of the Dallas-based environmental film festival, which will be held April 16-25. The festival continues its mission to showcase films and emerging media that explore science, conservation, climate change, and the environment while honoring the heroes working to protect our planet. EarthxFilm aims to turn awareness into action through education, art, and media.
Opening night for EarthxFilm will be highlighted with a drive-in presentation of Sally Aitken’s Sundance favorite Playing with Sharks, about the charismatic and groundbreaking diver Valerie Taylor, while closing night will feature the world premiere virtual presentation of Clark Johnson’s Percy Vs. Goliath, starring Christopher Walken, Adam Beach, Christina Ricci, and Zach Braff. Executive produced by NBA champion Dwight Howard, this true-life story tells of a farmer taking on a multi-national corporation over the impact of GMOs on his livelihood.
Additional film highlights will include an evening of Texas-focused films featuring EarthxFilm alum Ben Masters’ American Ocelot and Nicol Ragland’s Trans Pecos.
“Over the course of the past year, EarthxFilm has worked to adapt and innovate the way we present environmental stories and messages to the world,” said Michael Cain, co-founder and pPresident of EarthxFilm. “With over 12 million views since EarthxTV’s launch in September, we have seen great success with our online presentations, and we are excited to safely share these inspiring films with audiences in a public space once again.”
“While environmental issues have been less in focus because of the relentless news cycle of the last year, we know at EarthX that these challenges are no less urgent,” said David Holbrooke, EarthxFilm artistic director. “That is why we are so grateful to our many daring filmmakers and planetary heroes who have continued their work to bring us essential stories that will inspire our audience into action.
The 2021 EarthxFilm festival actively supports filmmakers through the payment of screenings fees and facilitating audience donations to their causes. In addition, cash prizes totaling $25,000 will be awarded to filmmakers and through impact grants to environmental organizations showcased in the films.
A highlight of this year’s edition is Christi Cooper’s Youth V Gov, the story of a groundbreaking lawsuit filed by America’s youth against the U.S. government, asserting it has willfully acted over six decades to create the climate crisis. The film was supported throughout its production by EarthX via a filmmaker residency and financing assistance.
Additional highlights include the award-winning film 2040, Damon Gameau’s visual letter to his 4-year-old daughter, a vision board of how environmental solutions could regenerate the world for future generations; David Abel’s Entangled, about how climate change has accelerated a collision between the nation’s most valuable fishery, and a federal agency mandated to protect both; and Beverly & Dereck Joubert’s Okavango: River of Dreams, a film about the Okavango River in Botswana, seeing the animals and people that use her, as well as those who are victim to the changes, brought about by her.
Another focus of this year’s lineup are two Texas-themed films screening back-to-back, Ben Masters’ American Ocelot, about the endangered wild cats, and Nicol Ragland’s Trans Pecos, which looks at the issues of land and water rights in far west Texas. A group of animal-focused, family-friendly short films will include Ami Vitale and David Allen’s Shaba, about an elephant sanctuary in northern Kenya; Richard Reens’ Pant Hoot, about a genocide survivor transcending overwhelming odds to become a master chimpanzee linguist; Kaitlyn Schwalje’s Snowy, a whimsical look at a pet turtle’s happiness; and Dominic Gill’s The Linesman: Both Sides Matter, which is the story of one man’s mission to end the human-elephant conflict in Myanmar.
Announcements will follow with news regarding panels, music presentations, youth films, EarthXR and more. For more information please go to: www.earthxfilm.org.