Leonardo Di Caprio's long-standing passion for climate change, which even brought him to NASA a few years ago, has now brought it to the screens in a new movie. The Oscar-winning actor (“The Revenant”) stars in the cast of “Don't Look Up” (Netflix, December 10), a dark satire about a deadly comet heading towards Earth. Film Director: Adam McKay (“The Big Short”) said the comet was designed to remind us of how the global warming crisis has been politicized by anyone who has a chance to do something about it. In a sense, we can say that Hollywood Stars Have Become Astronomers.
Let's take the movie “Before the Flood” about Di Caprio's advocacy for climate protection as an example.
Let us also recall his visits to the last United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26) in November and to NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in 2016.
DiCaprio stars as astronomer Randall Mindy in the new film, starring Jennifer Lawrence (X-Men: Apocalypse, The Hunger Games) as Kate Dibiasky, a doctoral student and colleague of her mentor and comet discoverer.
In the movie, Dibiasky and Mindy have to fight everyone from the US president to the military to get their message heard.
"I was grateful to play a character based on so many people I've met from the scientific community, especially climate scientists," Di Caprio said at a live-streamed press conference on Sunday, December 4.
“They're trying to convey the urgency of this issue and they feel like they've been exposed to the last page in the newspaper,” Di Caprio continued.
He said he liked Di Caprio and the personality of both characters. Jennifer Lawrence looks like the “Greta Thunberg” type.
The movie was conceived before the outbreak in March 2020.
Di Caprio is also remarkable for my emphasis on how science is politicized.
“COVID has affected the whole world. “There is a new scientific debate here, and it is very important to be a part of it at this special time,” he explains.
According to the director, Mc Kay states that the movie is a movie full of difficulties.
But the film's challenge, according to Mc Kay, was figuring out how to both express the urgency of climate change and let people laugh at the same time, as he felt that comedy could help audiences combine the various political views that could bring to the theater.
While this movie examines the effects of having a deadly comet associated with a person, Mainzer said during discussion that this is a completely fictional scenario. “Fortunately, we wouldn't name someone really dangerous after a real-life human with asteroids and comets. This is not allowed.”
The subject that is satirized in the movie is about climate change.
With the help of University of Arizona astronomer Amy Mainzer, the film also attempts to portray comet science in at least a somewhat realistic format.
Jennifer Lawrence portrays a PhD.
After discovering the comet, she feels like she's found a whole new world.
This discovery will also be a boon to him in completing his long research work in order to obtain his doctoral degree.
But his feelings about the comet change when it quickly becomes clear that his discovery is a disaster in the making.
“I think he probably has evolved,” Lawrence said of Dibiasky during his panel speech.
“I think he was very, very proud of the discovery he made in the first place. And then I'm sure that when people started to fear Dibiasky's Comet, he started to feel disappointed too.”
While the film examines the effects of having a deadly comet associated with a person, Mainzer said during discussion that this is a purely fictional scenario.
Almost every stakeholder in science has been misled, so there have been satirical and negative portrayals of how the media and politicians, as well as scientists, deal with “bad news” and disseminate it to the public.
US President Janie Orlean (Meryl Streep) initially turns astronomers away by having the discovery checked using institutions the White House considers more prestigious than the University of Michigan's Department of Astronomy where Mindy studied.
Streep makes the following statements for Film.
Streep says, “It was a little fun to put together this character who is just a pure identity, constantly reproaching for power, money and more, just because of passion, and that's it.”
“There is no sense of brotherhood and unfortunately that's the price of being a public servant,” he added.
“You really have to make a big sacrifice.
Your family is making a great sacrifice, too, and you must be willing to do so.
It's amazing that there are good people to do this. But we need them right now.”
Despite warm support from the real-life Planetary Defense Coordination Office (PDCO) script, which evaluates Earth-threatening objects, in an early scene in the film, Orlean and his son Jason - also the White House chief of staff - completely dismiss the astronomers before checking their work.
Clayton “Teddy” Oglethorpe (Rob Morgan) was the PDCO's senior representative in the movie and was sitting in the room during the White House debate. He said the scene was poignant, given the recent high-level debate about climate science in politics. He said Orleans "just ignored the facts and science."
“Don't Look Up” was released on Friday, December 10, and will be released on Netflix's streaming platform on December 24.