2017 Environmental Film Festival:
25 Years of Films for the PlanetThe Environmental Film Festival in the Nation’s Capital, the largest and longest-running festival of its kind in the U.S. and the largest film festival in Washington, D.C, will commemorate its 25th anniversary this spring. Marking a quarter-century of celebrating and defending earth through the power of film, the 2017 Festival, March 14 through 26, will focus its lens on a planet in transition, exploring what has happened over the past 25 years and what lies ahead.
The festival showcases the wonders of the natural world and seeks to advance understanding of the environment and inspire wise stewardship of the planet. Selected to provide fresh perspectives on our world, films will travel the globe, illuminating vital environmental issues and challenges, including the impact of climate change, endangered wildlife, food and agriculture, oceans and freshwater, energy and resources, and the built environment.
In partnership with leading museums, embassies, universities and theaters, the festival will present 150-plus films—documentaries, narratives and animations, as well as shorts and experimental works—at some 50 venues across the city and in nearby Maryland and Virginia. Screenings will be followed by discussions with filmmakers and environmental experts and many are free. The festival schedule will be available in February on the festival website, DCEFF.org.
The festival will kick off on opening night, March 14, with the Washington, D.C. premiere of Water & Power: A California Heist, which had its world premiere at the 2017 Sundance Film Festival. Recognizing that water is the new oil and that it is growing more valuable as it becomes less accessible, this film exposes the alarming exploits of California’s most notorious water barons, who profit from the state’s resources while everyday citizens and small farmers endure debilitating water crises.
Closing night, March 26, will be a double celebration – the festival finale with the screening of Oscar-nominated French filmmaker Jacques Perrin’s new film, Seasons (Les Saisons), winner of the Festival’s Polly Krakora Award for Artistry in Film. Capturing the lush green forests and megafauna that emerged across Europe following the last ice age, Seasons narrates the adventures of countless species of wildlife through the eyes of the animals, now under threat from climate change and human civilization. Jacques Perrin will be at the screening to receive the award and discuss his film.
The Festival’s Eric Moe Award for the Best Short on Sustainability will be presented on March 20 to director Craig Norris at the screening of his film, Kokota: The Islet of Hope. The film presents Mbarouk Mussa Omar’s quest to help the East African island of Kokota, which is severely threatened by climate change and deforestation. It tells the inspiring story of unlikely, but resilient, heroes who have managed to innovatively adapt to a warming climate while reforesting their island.
Another festival highlight will be the U.S. premiere of Colombia: Magia Salvaje (Colombia: Wild Magic), exploring the diverse habitats—from majestic mountain ranges to virgin jungles—and extraordinary creatures, from jaguars to hammerhead sharks, that make Colombia one of the most spectacular and biologically diverse countries on earth.
The festival will also screen Oscar-winning actor, environmental activist and United Nations Messenger of Peace Leonardo DiCaprio’s new film, Before the Flood, following his travels to five continents and the Arctic to witness climate change firsthand. He speaks to scientists, world leaders, activists and local residents to gain a deeper understanding of this complex issue and investigates concrete solutions to the most pressing environmental challenge of our time.