It was easy being green for guests of the Environmental Media Awards on Saturday night, where the stars arrived at Warner Bros. Studios to honor efforts in sustainable productions and green content in a true backlot bash.
Ed Begley Jr., kicked off the 24th annual kudos by valeting his bicycle while “Castle’s” Stana Katic took to the podium. “Very few Hollywood marriages last 25 years,” Katic joked, marking the start of the Environmental Media Assn.’s 25th year working with Hollywood to inspire green initiatives.
Since its founding in 1989, by Lyn and Norman Lear and Cindy and Alan Horn, the Environmental Media Assn. has used the power of the media and Hollywood to promote environmental responsibility, and has awarded green seals to over 520 productions for their efforts to keep production and sets as sustainable as possible. In all 56 EMA green seals were awarded this year alone.
Individual honors for the night went to productions that spanned genres and platforms including feature film “Disneynature Bears,” documentary “GMO OMG,” “Cosmos,” “Paw Patrol” and digital video “Should We All Be Eating Insects?”
“So much of what we do is trying to talk to our producers and different studios and writers about content,” said Wendie Malick, a longtime supporter of the org. “What else are we going to do? We can’t talk about our clothes all the time. If somebody’s going to throw a microphone in my face I’d rather say ‘Hey, there’s this really cool thing you could do to make a difference.’”
“It’s about doing as much as we can with our platform and what we do to create change in the environment and raise everyone’s awareness,” said Emily VanCamp.
Honorees for the evening agreed, repeatedly gushing that the Environmental Media Award is one that actually means something.
“It’s so important,” said Malin Akerman, who regularly works with the EMA in school outreach programs, and even led an effort on the production of “Trophy Wife” for more recycling and less waste. “There’s so much paper waste on sets. Everyone has some sort of smartphone that they can read new sides and call times on, we don’t need all of those papers printed.”
The EMA not only recognizes green productions, but also green content in them. NBC’s “Parenthood” and Fox’s “New Girl” were honored for storylines that encouraged sustainable living in episodes “All Aboard Who’s Coming Aboard” and “Menus,” respectively.
VanCamp even added her own excitement that her “Revenge” character is driving a Tesla this season, a small addition to the many efforts to bring the environment to the primetime audience.
“We’re part of a system that exports lifestyle and we could do a great job of exporting a really interesting lifestyle,” added Katic. The actress was repping her Alternative Travel Project, which encourages the use of modes of transportation that reduce our carbon footprint. She cited her trip to Mongolia and the country’s growing infrastructure poised to be influenced by entertainment. “If we’re part of imagery that is a little bit more proactive about creating sustainable futures, then I think we’ve done a really great job.”
“There are some really interesting stories that you could create just by bumping into someone on the street or on the subway, so I really hope we can encourage some of those stories to happen,” she said.
Additional honors went to the Fox Fall Eco-Casino Party, National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence Enric Sala and the Pristine Seas Project and Showtime docuseries “Years of Living Dangerously.” The EMA also raffled off one of Toyota’s first zero-emission fuel-cell vehicles in a $100 drawing, entertainingly presented by Akerman and Rob Corddry, as Akerman walked on Corddry’s back.
Following the ceremony, attendees were treated to a completely sustainable party on the lot with compostable dinnerware and reusable glassware. Chef stations served up seasonal, organic dishes with leftover food donated through the Greater West Hollywood Food Coalition.
2014 Environmental Media Award full list of winners:
Feature Length Content: “Disneynature Bears” (Walt Disney Pictures)
Documentary Film: “GMO OMG” (Compeller Pictures)
Television Episodic Drama: “Parenthood,” “All Aboard Who’s Coming Aboard” (NBC)
Television Episodic Comedy: “New Girl,” “Menus” (Fox)
Reality Television: “Cosmos: A Space Time Odyssey,” “A World Set Free” (F0x/National Geographic Channel)
Children’s Television: “Paw Patrol,” “Pups Save the Bay” (Nick Jr.)
EMA Digital Video Award presented by TakePart: “Should We All Be Eating Insects?” (AsapScience)
Producers: Gregory Brown, Mitchell Moffit