Jeff Bridges produces climate change film based on SB mudslide experience
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On January 9, 2018, Jeff Bridges’s family home in Montecito, California, was struck by a debris flow that came one month after a series of major wildfires caused de-vegetation and destabilization on the surrounding slopes. 21 people lost their lives, with two still missing, in the Santa Barbara County mudslides. Bridges, his wife Susan, and their dog were airlifted to safety. “The hillside didn’t have any foliage on there and it just came at us and wiped the house out,” said Bridges over the phone from Santa Barbara recently.
This personal experience and a life-long concern for the world he walks in led Bridges to meet with filmmaker Susan Kucera and become a producer and narrator for the documentary film “Living in the Future’s Past.” “He’s a wonderful collaborator, so the process of creating the film — well, it’s hard work — it was an enjoyable experience,” commented Kucera, “I love the fact that we didn’t try to make people feel guilty. That helped also for our capacity for compassion for each other.”
The film is one of the highlights of the second annual Elements Film Festival, being held from April 8 to 14 at Telus World of Science in Vancouver. It was screened on April 11 and was be attended by Kucera. The beautifully photographed 4K film looks at how human nature and our subconscious tendencies affect the way we are in the world and subsequently our future as a species. “Living in the Future’s Past” is far from an environmental polemic or an outline of our crash course to extinction. Jeff Bridges doesn’t abide yelling as a way to get a point across.
“Like so many folks, I am concerned about our planet and this rapid change that’s happening and I wanted to participate, but I wanted to do something that was going to bring some new information to the party,” said the Academy Award-winning actor, who has worked extensively in Vancouver. “I didn’t want to make a documentary about pointing fingers at the bad oil people and that kind of thing. Or spotlight all of the terrible findings scientists had found. We’d done enough of that. I wanted to figure out something new, so we got together and talked about it and she felt the same way.”
The pair talked over a duration of two and half years and formed the film that would allow Bridges to share this concern with new information to see the harm of climate change.
“Living in the Future’s Past” is accessible on iTunes, Amazon Prime, Google-Play, and will air on the National Geographic Channel on Earth Day, April 22.