Hijacking King Lear

Location | Mood | Date 29 January 2009
Author (full name): 
Franny Armstrong
29 January 2009


Sure you're all far too busy and important to be watching breakfast telly of a morning, so you'll have missed Stupid's starring role on the BBC sofa on Tuesday, courtesy of Pete P who was on there talking about being King Lear: http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=x4f-DTqKdyM

Meanwhile, thanks to David (editor), Rachel (editor), Andy (assistant editor) Nick (sound editor), Bonnie (post supervisor), Barney (picture online), Ian (post technical), Len (film transfer), Susannah (runner) and Leo (web editor), the final trailer is finally finished and finally looking very sparkly in its final HD glory: http://vimeo.com/2991411   Please pass the link on to everyone you've ever met. It's now gone forth to multiply itself 50 times and may well make it into a cinema near you in the next month. Do let us know if you see it.

"How do you keep going?" seems to be the new favourite interview question. Don't want to get too pretentious on you, but Nietzche's "He who has a why to live for can bear almost any how" is about right. And, less philosophically, a huge source of inspiration & motivation is the constant stream of supporting emails we receive. Like this from my lovely Uncle, who's a marine biologist, amongst other things:

-> "In the marine environment, a groundswell develops once a certain amount of energy has been transferred from the atmosphere.  Even if the actual weather event moves elsewhere, the groundswell will still release the energy onto the beaches in the form of waves.  Whatever happens now, 'Stupid' will deliver a phenomenal amount of energy on March 15th. Keep it going and good luck! Unc x"

Speaking of emails, please accept our apologies for not answering every message as quickly as we used to. Even though the team has just doubled in size (six full-time now), we are all utterly overwhelmed and it seems that each time we draft in another volunteer and get things under control for a few days, our inboxes multiply themselves exponentially again. But rest assured they're all being read and will get answered either personally or via the list. On the key question of exactly when and where the film will screen when it opens, we'll be able to let everyone know the final list in two weeks. Easier to send it out on here than reply to the 726 emails individually... (You think I exaggerate?).

Apologies, too, for one of our super high-tech and on-it web boys sending out a random message on this list the other day.

Lizzie stopped off in Sydney on her way back to London from New Zealand yesterday, and held a quick NGO-stirring session while she was at it. Feedback from down under down under.

See you,


The screening last night went really well. About seventy people from about 25 organisations (see below). Jackie Buckingham from the Wilderness Society and Josh Wyndham-Kidd from Youth Climate Coalition helped me set the whole thing up and were total stars throughout. We gave everyone a brown paper bag with a resource DVD, NGO pack, two stickers and the yellow feedback forms.

All the comments were really positive - see a selection below - and quite a few people said that this is exactly what Australia needs to wake it up in this critical year. Two people said that this film will cause a similar step change in public awareness as An Inconvenient Truth. There was also a sense that the movement is blossoming here and this could be the year when it really takes off. Cool eh?

Organisations represented
CANA, Greenpeace, FOE, Australian Conservation Foundation, WWF, The Green Party - Green MP John Kaye, The Wilderness Society, Transition Sydney, Australian Museum, Be the Change Australia, Catalyst, Centre for POlicy Development, Climate Action Coogee, Climate Change Research Centre, DECC, Geoexcghange Australia, Nature Conservation Council of NSW, OzGreen, People for a Safe Climate, SCRAP, Wholistic Business Network, Wakeup Sydney, XL

In terms of the official Australian release, the thinking is to hits cinemas here straight after the film festivals, so in late July or even August. So that'd be great timing for Copenhagen, but depends on lots of factors, so nothing's confirmed yet.

See you in 24 hours

""I think the movie is a wonderful next step from Al's Inconvenient Truth and it could be utilised very effectively here." - Jenny C

"Great film. We could use it to mobilise local community action. Shows how easy it is for people to delude themselves that they are 'green' when in fact they are part of the problem." - Peter D

Have to say I came out very depressed about the too too ignorant people in this world, but also inspired! - Fran D

"The film is compelling - the people that the film focuses on are wonderful 'messengers'.  A great theme that finally addresses the urgency of solving the crisis, globally, now." - Sue L

"The Age of Stupid is an incredibly timely film. For anyone who cares about the future of this planet it is not to be missed!" - Emma D

"Excellent! The film about climate change that everyone can understand".- Anne C

"Brilliant film. In a brilliant tradition of Allan Watkins 'The War Game. More urgent than An Inconvenient Truth. It needs to be seen by the greatest number of people.  And we need to connect and act. Bravo". - Stephen L

"Enjoyed the screening last night. Excellent polemic film. Now we need the people with influence to (a) see it (b) accept it as "true" and (c) act on that belief. There's a lot of inertia to overcome.... And let's declare "The War on Stupid". It's no more daft than a War on Poverty or Terror." - Colin S