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ALBATROSS Film Depicts Newly-Emerging Issue of Ocean Plastic Pollution

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — ALBATROSS, a film by artist Chris Jordan, will be offered as a free public screening through Penn State Centre Stage and Penn State Sustainability Institute, Friday, July 12, at 12 p.m., and Tuesday, July 16, at 7 p.m., at the Penn State Downtown Theatre. Following the Tuesday screening, a panel discussion will be held with experts who specialize in consumer behavior, the impacts of microplastics on marine environments, and the importance of local recycling efforts. Rick Lombardo, Penn State Centre Stage producing artistic director will moderate the panel.

ALBATROSS the film is a powerful visual journey into the heart of an astonishingly symbolic environmental tragedy. On one of the remotest islands on our planet, tens of thousands of baby albatrosses lie dead on the ground, their bodies filled with plastic. The story is framed in the vividly gorgeous language of state-of-the-art high-definition digital cinematography, surrounded by millions of live birds in one of the world’s most beautiful natural sanctuaries.

A primary intention of ALBATROSS is to delve into feelings of a kind that we might usually tend to avoid. This film looks deeply into sadness, grief, beauty, and love, in ways that can feel uncomfortable. But as Chris Jordan likes to say, that is the whole intention: when we allow ourselves to feel our sadness for what is being lost in our world, then we connect with the part of ourselves that loves our world. In this way, coming to know the true nature of grief can be a liberating experience. When grief is no longer seen as a “bad” feeling, then it can be embraced as a portal to deeper connection with life.

Benjamin Evett, co-producer/playwright of “Albatross” the play, running in conjunction, July 10–20 at the Penn State Downtown Theatre, incorporated the relevance of the issue into the script. Evett states, ” A fundamental theme of the story is how our little thoughtless actions have consequences, ripples that affect the people around us, all living things, and the earth itself, which the play sees as having a divine spirit. “Albatross” takes on incredibly timely issues like climate change, the cruelty of humans to each other and to life on this planet, and our need to be mindful of the effect we are having.”

Some portions of the film are disturbing and not intended for younger audiences. Watch the 3-minute trailer at ALBATROSSTHEFILM.COM