Magazine article E Magazine

Green Contradictions in Hollywood

Magazine article E Magazine

Green Contradictions in Hollywood

Article excerpt

Hollywood's scripts are becoming increasingly friendly to environmental causes. After all, Murphy Brown recycles, and Universal wagered $175 million on the Kevin Costner film Waterworld, in which centuries of global warming have caused the polar ice caps to melt, leaving the Earth's surface covered in water.

That's all well and good, but did Costner's assistant throw the star's water bottles in the trash can or the recycling bin? Hollywood has often been accused of "Sunday charity" -- putting support behind good causes when the cameras are on, but forgetting all about it after the lights go off.

Hollywood isn't going green overnight, but small signs of a higher environmental consciousness include the recent Nicholas Cage-Dana Carvey comedy trapped in Paradise, which features the announcement, "No rainforest timber was used in the production of this motion picture."

"Lauan" is a tropical hardwood from Southeast Asia, which is often used to build movie sets. The San Francisco-based Rainforest Action Network (RAN) has spent three years trying to stop major Hollywood studios from using lauan. In 1992, the entertainment industry was using -- and rarely reusing -- a quarter-million sheets of it every year. "It's a popular wood because it's cheap and it works well," says RAN's Tamar Hurwitz. "But lauan is becoming endangered."

RAN hopes that trapped in Paradise is the start of a trend. "Batman is also lauan-free," says Randall Hayes, RAN's executive director. "All of the major studios have agreed to stop using or phase-out lauan. …

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