Connect to share and comment

Environmentally conscious film is said to help Greens

A new movie by Yann Arthus-Bertrand called “Home” is being credited — or blamed — for giving an unfair advantage to the Greens in the European Parliamentary elections.

Some are crying foul over the prime time television broadcast on France 2 of the film, which depicts man’s harmful effects on the environment, just two nights before the close of four days of voting in the transnational elections, saying the move was meant to sway votes. The Green Party obtained 16.2 percent of the votes nationally, coming in closely behind the Socialist party.
Arthus-Bertrand, who directed the movie, told Le that the June 5th broadcast date had been set two years ago. The paper reported that an estimated 8.3 million viewers tuned in to watch.

In addition to prime time television, the movie was released simultaneously in theaters, on DVD, on the Internet and a free screening was held beneath the Eiffel Tower. The film was released in over 100 countries to coincide with World Environment Day. The makers said the aim “is to reach the widest possible audience, and to convince us all of our individual and collective responsibility towards the planet,” according to the film’s website.

Luc Besson, the French film director, and Francois-Henri Pinault, a French businessman (who is married to actress Salma Hayek), are listed as distributors. The documentary was shot from the air in Arthus-Bertrand’s signature style and “eventually added up to 54 countries, 217 days’ shooting and 488 hours of footage,” according to the site.

In less surprising results, President Nicolas Sarkozy’s center-right UMP party easily garnered the lead with 28 percent of the overall vote, while the Socialists won 16.8 percent. The Minister of the Interior reported an all-time low voter turnout of 40 percent.