On March 19 Earthwatch will honor Wild Ocean, a Giant Screen Films and Yes/No Productions release, as its 2009 Film of the Year with a screening, award presentation, and panel discussion in Washington, DC.
Written, directed, edited, and scored by Luke Cresswell and Steve McNicholas (the UK-based, Oscar and Emmy-nominated creative duo behind the internationally acclaimed Stomp), Wild Ocean is presented in theatres worldwide by Nokia.
Each year an unbelievable feeding frenzy takes place in the oceans of South Africa as billions of fish migrate up the KwaZulu-Natal Wild Coast. Wild Ocean 3D (U.S., 2008, 40 min.), an explosive documentary about man and nature, reveals startling giant-screen images of breaching whales, feeding sharks, diving gannets, and massive bait balls. The migration has provided a food source for life in the ocean and for the people living along the shore. However, years of overfishing are threatening this invaluable natural resource.
The film shows how business, government, and the local people have joined forces to protect this vital ecosystem. It immerses audiences in an epic underwater struggle for survival and depicts the economic and cultural impact the migration has on the coastal communities.
This 23rd Annual Earthwatch Film of the Year Award is given in cooperation with the Environmental Film Festival in the Nation's Capital. Earthwatch's film award program has honored environmental filmmaking for more than two decades, recognizing the power and potential of visual media to reach mass audiences and inspire them to take action on behalf of our shared environment.
The screening is followed by a discussion among Philippe Cousteau Jr., environmentalist and president and CEO of EarthEcho International; Clapperton Mavhunga, Earthwatch Principal Investigator and assistant professor of science, technology, and society at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology; Edward Wilson, president and CEO of Earthwatch Institute; and Wild Ocean directors Luke Cresswell and Steve McNicholas, who were nominated for an Academy Award for directing Pulse: A STOMP Odyssey. The panel will take questions from the audience.
Earthwatch will screen Wild Ocean March 19 at 7:00 PM the Johnson IMAX Theater at the National Museum of Natural History, in cooperation with the Smithsonian Associates, at 10th Street and Constitution Ave., NW.