YouTube Original doc “The Letter: A Message For Our Earth,” an unprecedented call to action for climate change from Pope Francis, featuring his dialogues with activists from the Brazilian Amazon, India, Senegal and the U.S., launched on Tuesday from Vatican City.
The high-profile ecological doc is directed by Emmy-winning director Nicolas Brown (“Serengeti Rules”) and produced by Off The Fence, the company behind Oscar-winning doc “My Octopus Teacher,” in tandem with the Laudato si’ Movement which is a global Catholic climate change organization.
Shot in cinematic style, “The Letter” takes its cue from the pope’s landmark Laudato si’ environmental encyclical and interweaves the lives of five main characters, comprising Amazon rain forest tribe chief Cacique Odair “Dadá” Borari; Ridhima Pandey, a young climate activist from India; Senegalese climate refugee Arouna Kandé who is a student in sustainable development; and U.S. scientists Greg Asner and Robin Martin who have developed an innovative technique to map underwater heat waves that kill coral reefs.
Each character was invited to Rome for a private audience with the Pope during which they shared their personal story and that of their country, revealing new eye-opening perspectives on the state of our planet and the need to do to rebalance our relations with the earth.
“The Letter” was launched with a press conference in the Vatican attended by the doc’s director, and its protagonists, excluding Pope Francis, along with Cardinal Michael Czerny, who is the Vatican’s top official on ecological issues, Hoesung Lee, who is chair of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), and Lorna Gold, who is the Laudato Si’ Movement’s president of the board.
The world premiere of “The Letter” will take place in the Vatican’s Synod Hall later today, starting at 18:30 Rome time. Concurrently the YouTube Original film will be made available to viewers worldwide free of charge.
The premiere is symbolically taking place on the same day as the Holy See’s official entry into the landmark Paris agreement on climate change.
Watch the trailer here: