Paramount’s green release strategy

How the studio offset emissions connected to Gore's doc

When Paramount decided to release Al Gore’s “An Inconvenient Truth,” it also decided that a film about global environmental catastrophe shouldn’t inadvertently contribute to that catastrophe.

Working with a variety of companies, the studio and the film’s producers made sure the pic’s message would prevail and that everything surrounding “An Inconvenient Truth” would be handled in as eco-friendly a manner as possible. That also meant that every carbon emission connected to the film’s making, promotion and distribution was accounted for and offset.

A brief rundown:

  • CUTTING CARBON: Every aspect of the film — down to the power usage of the hotel rooms Al Gore slept in during his still ongoing promotional tour — was offset through the purchase of green tags. Paramount Classics and Participant Prods. split the cost and hired carbon offsetting company Native Energy to put their money toward building renewable energy projects in a Native American Alaskan village.

    “We chose to back a new project, because we believe in looking future-forward,” says Lisa Day, Participant’s VP of corporate affairs. “The only way to grow this industry is to help new projects get off the ground.”

  • SPEAKING “TRUTH”: A number of musical talents, including Jon Bon Jovi, Melissa Etheridge and Aerosmith, were so inspired by “An Inconvenient Truth” that they played the film’s trailer before their concerts and passed out global-warming eco-primers — printed, of course, on recycled paper — to audiences. Student groups, such as TruthOnCampus.org, organized screenings and encouraged post-viewing discussions and the formation of action groups.

  • PARTYING RESPONSIBLY: For the film’s premieres in Los Angeles and Washington, D.C., invitations were printed with soy ink and e-vites were used whenever possible. Talent and other VIPs were chauffeured in hybrids or biodiesel cars, and guests were encouraged to take public transportation. Guests were fed organic, free-range food. Biota — the world’s first spring water packaged in bio-degradable bottle made from corn — was served. Hemp tablecloths, organic catering outfits and bamboo silverware rounded out the eco accoutrements.

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