‘Vote for the people who believe in the science’ says Oscar-winning Director Darren Aronofsky as Americans gather for the midterms

‘Vote for the people who believe in the science’ says Oscar-winning Director Darren Aronofsky as Americans go to the polls in the US midterm election.

By Kirstie Wielandt

On the eve of the US midterm election, filmmaker Darren Aronofsky addressed the audience at the opening event of the Web Summit tech conference in Lisbon, Portugal with a call to action, encouraging people to vote for science.

Most people know Darren Aronofsky as the Hollywood director of surreal and melodramatic films such as Black Swan, Pi, The Wrestler and more recently ‘Mother’. What they may not know is that he’s a former social anthropology graduate and committed environmentalist who sits on the board of the Sierra Club and has received awards for his activism from the Humane Society of the United States as well as PETA.

Several of his films, notably Noah and Mother, are often referred to as environmental parables; the first chronicling humanity’s failure to stop a biblical flood and the latter, by some, interpreted as an allegory of Mother Earth and how she cares for herself and ‘the man in her life’.

Whether or not the narratives are effective and the metaphors work, there’s no denying Aronofsky is more than a cut and dry Hollywood director, he’s a profoundly creative visual artist who enjoys pushing storytelling to its limits, being the first director to make a film available for download on the internet (Pi in 1998) and is currently proactively exploring the potential artificial intelligence (AI) and virtual reality (VR) for his chosen medium.

It was no surprise, therefore, to see Aronofsky at the opening event of the 2018 Web Summit in Lisbon this week, where he was interviewed live in stage about his interest in both tech and the environment by Lauren Goode from Wired Magazine.

Asked about his motivation for exploring environmental themes in his work, he explained that ‘ultimately climate change is the paramount issue of our time, all other issues are unimportant if you don’t have a home.’ Asked about how he felt about the future in the context of the current US administration, he revealed that he was less cynical than many, ‘I’m fundamentally an optimist and feel positive about our future, but the government needs to help us move in the right direction…. for this to happen, it’s essential that we vote for the people that believe in the science.. and they can’t cherry pick science to suit their own needs.’

A call to action from a powerful influencer on the eve of the US midterms.

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