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In director Adam McKay’s “Don’t Look Up,” a 2021 satire about two scientists who try in vain to warn the world about a planet-destroying comet, scientists’ desperate pleas for action ultimately don’t work. does.

But don’t take this as McKay’s perspective on the power of activism to change the course of the climate crisis his film was actually about an existential threat.


McKay plans to announce a $4 million donation Tuesday to the Climate Emergency Fund, an organization dedicated to getting money into the hands of activists engaged in disruptive demonstrations that demand faster, more aggressive climate action. urges. It is the largest donation the fund has received since it began in 2019, and McKay’s largest personal gift. He joined the organization’s board in August.

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McKay said in a recent interview with the Associated Press, “Climate change is extremely dangerous, extremely frightening, and quickly the only thing I’m thinking about on a daily basis, even as I write the script. I am writing and directing or producing.” ,

From the overthrow of the monarchy to the era of labor movements and civil rights, activism is an “incredibly kinetic, powerful, transformative” force that has driven change throughout history, he said.

The Climate Emergency Fund has awarded $7 million to organizations supporting mostly volunteer climate activists around the world. Those activists have done everything from marching the streets of France to urging people to “look up”—a reference to Mackay’s film—about the need for federal climate law to ride on the boat of West Virginia Sen. To perform on the near water.

The fund’s goal is to provide a bridge to the more traditional wealthy donors, with activists looking to make a statement—two groups that don’t always see eye-to-eye, the fund’s executive director and clinical psychologist Margaret Klein. Salamon said.

As for the ending of “Don’t Look Up,” Salaman said it was a “significant psychological, cultural intervention” that put the stakes of the climate fight on clear display.

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For his part, McKay said he hesitates to attribute any direct action to his film. But he sees both the film and the disruptive protest as actions that change culture, which could be a major step toward influencing policy. He said the film received an incredible response from general audiences and scientists around the world, who have been fighting for climate action for decades.

He said, “It was really beautiful to see people who have been fighting this battle longer than me, who feel really watched.”

McKay, 54, began his career in comedy writing and became known for films such as “Anchorman” and “Step Brothers”. In recent years, his work has taken on a more political tone, although it is still in the realm of comedy – if dark. He wrote and directed “The Big Short”, about the 2008 financial collapse, and “Vice”, about the influence of former Vice President Dick Cheney, and he is the executive producer of “Succession”, about a media mogul and his children. I want to take over the television show company.

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He says that his own climate awakening came several years ago when he read a report by the International Panel on Climate Change that highlighted the vast differences that range from 3.6 degrees Fahrenheit to 2.7 degrees Fahrenheit above pre-industrial levels. will be generated when heated. It was the moment, he said, that he went from someone who was concerned about climate change to someone who saw it as a state of hair fire.

In subsequent years, the situation has only become more dire, he said, pointing to the drying up of the Colorado River, flooding in Pakistan and Europe’s summer heat, saying action is urgent.

“I truly believe, without exaggeration, scientifically speaking, this is the greatest challenge, story, threat in human history,” he said.