12th Annual Environmental Film Festival Starts Today

Filmmaker Attenborough Will Be Honored

Posted March 17, 2004 at 2:18pm

Springtime in Washington, D.C., means more than just warmer weather and blooming cherry blossoms: It is also the time for the annual Environmental Film Festival in the nation’s capital.

From today through March 28, the 12th annual festival will show 90 films at sites around the city in an attempt to educate the public about the problems and wonders facing our planet’s environment.

“Our hope is to engage people into really thinking about the environment,” said Flo Stone, founder of the festival.

Included in this year’s festival will be a lecture by British naturalist and filmmaker David Attenborough, who will show clips from his films, and receive the Smithson Medal from the Smithsonian Institution for his lifetime’s work of bringing Mother Nature to the silver screen.

“We’ve been asking him to come in years past, and we are very excited that this year he accepted,” Stone said.

Pixar Animation Studio’s Shorts Group’s creative director, Roger Gould, will also be on hand to talk about the production of 2003’s animated blockbuster movie, “Finding Nemo.”

Other films will broach environmental topics ranging from the devastating effects of AIDS in Kenya to the implications global warming is having on the Arctic.

Several of the films shown have won awards at other festivals, including Germany’s Okomedia International Environmental Film Festival and the Jackson Hole Wildlife Film Festival. Many of the other films’ screenings will be world premieres.

Throughout the festival, viewers will hear from 22 filmmakers discussing their work and 36 scientists, educators and cultural figures giving a separate perspective on the environmental problems these films highlight.

Films shown as part of the festival will be screened at venues including museums, embassies, libraries, universities, international organizations and local theaters. Most of the screenings are free to the public.

For more information, visit www.dcenvironmentalfilmfest.org or call (202) 342-2564.