Greenpeace origins film
I feel like writing this like X-Men Origins: Greenpeace, it's not quite that, but close. News today is that Jon Turteltaub is set to direct a film that looks at the beginning of the Greenpeace organisation during the seventies and eighties, and how the group was formed and their defining early moments.
In the early days Greenpeace were huge news and they regularly interrupted some major events that were seen as dangerous to our planet, events such as nuclear tests by America and France, whaling vessels from Japan and Russia, and on the way built an organisation that is as much political as it is intervention focused.
The film will focus on the two main instigators of Greenpeace, the founding members Bob Hunter and Rex Weyle who led a group of activists from all areas of life from ecologists to teachers, from sailors to musicians, and intervened to save everything from a lone seal to the release of radiation into our atmosphere through multiple atomic bomb tests.
Looking back on their early days it's clear that they were pioneers in the movement to save ourselves from ourselves, a movement that is growing and growing each day and runs through the forefront of politicians and major corporations minds, a situation that could only be imagined in the early days of this small group of people. Back then their main intent was to raise any publicity on some terrible events carried out by these very same groups of people who today talk about green action on a daily basis.
Wikipedia talks about the founding of Greenpeace:
Greenpeace, originally known as the Greenpeace Foundation, was founded in Vancouver, British Columbia, in 1971. Early meetings were held in the Shaughnessy home of Robert and Bobbi Hunter. The first office was opened in a back-room, storefront off Broadway on Cypress in Kitsilano, (Vancouver). On September 15, 1971, the Don't Make a Wave Committee sent the eighty foot halibut seiner Phyllis Cormack from Vancouver, to oppose United States testing of nuclear devices in Amchitka, Alaska. While the boat never reached its destination and was turned back by the US military, this campaign was deemed the first using the name Greenpeace.
In 1972, the Greenpeace Foundation evolved in its own right to a less conservative and structured collective of environmentalists who were more reflective of the counterculture and hippie youth movements of the 1960s and 1970s. The social and cultural background from which Greenpeace emerged heralded a period of de-conditioning away from old world antecedents and sought to develop new codes of social, environmental and political behavior.
According to Variety Jon Turteltaub is set to direct the film which will pull from the books from the two founders themselves, Rex Weyler's Greenpeace: How a Group of Ecologists, Journalists, and Visionaries Changed the World (Amazon.co.uk / Amazon.com) and Bob Hunter's Warriors of the Rainbow: A Chronicle of the Greenpeace Movement (Amazon.com).
Currently they are looking for a writer to take on the task and apparently there have been some discussions with Aaron Sorkin for the task. Similarities indeed considering his recent work on Charlie Wilson's War, The Social Network and The Trial of the Chicago 7.
This is undoubtedly has the potential to be a huge film, and something of a strong educator, however there's a real concern for me that it becomes too much like entertainment and forgets the real message of Greenpeace. Mind you, if they do secure Sorkin, then the script will definitely bring through the right message.