MetFilm School Celebrates Earth Month 2023
By Elise Czyzowska
10 May 2023
Each year, the month of April becomes ‘Earth Month’, with the focus on raising awareness towards key environmental issues. This year, the theme was ‘Invest in our Planet’, encouraging people to invest in sustainable practices and make their voices known. ‘Gen Z provides inspiration,’ the initiative shared on their website, ‘with 45% having stopped buying from brands with poor ethical and sustainability practices’.
In support of Earth Month, and of a greener future, the MetFilm School community got involved in a range of activities, from film and poster competitions dedicated towards spreading a sustainable message, to on-campus screenings of environmental-focused films.
Read on to hear more about Earth Month at MetFilm School, as well as to find out how the School is dedicated to helping the planet every day of the year.
Earth Month at MetFilm School
As part of our regular School activities, MetFilm Futures runs on-campus film screenings each week, giving students an opportunity to get together to watch a curated selection of films. For April, the selection was connected by a focus on environmental topics, from documentaries on climate issues, to feature films spreading a message of helping and healing our planet. The films shown during Earth Month included:
- Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind (Hayao Miyazaki, 1984)
- Fire of Love (Sara Dosa, 2022)
- FernGully: The Last Rainforest (Bill Kroyer, 1992)
- All That Breathes (Shaunak Sen, 2022)
All That Breathes was a particularly significant screening for our students to attend, with MA Producing Graduate, Guy Horlock, having worked on the film as Associate Producer. All That Breathes is a story of ‘the interconnectedness of an ecosystem‘, following brothers Nadeem Shehzad and Mohammed Saud, who run a bird clinic in Delhi to protect the black kite breed against air pollution in the city.
As well as these screenings, MetFilm Futures also ran a green-focused Masterclass with Environmental Coordinator, Ash Gadhvi. In conversation with Jonny Persey at our London campus, Ash shared his experience working on major productions including The Batman, Aladdin, and 1917 – the first net-zero feature film production.
Earth Month Competitions
To further inspire our students to get involved with Earth Month 2023, the School ran two sustainability-focused competitions during April:
- Raise Awareness Poster Competition: Create a poster detailing ‘how to “go green”‘
- Earth Month Film Competition: Create a 30-120 second film responding to the question, ‘What does sustainability mean to me?’
The Raise Awareness Poster Competition was won by Shahrizuan Shaharuddin, who studies MA Cinematography at MetFilm School Leeds, while the Film Competition was won by BA Acting for Screen student, Patrick Gilmore.
Patrick’s film, Carpe Diem, aimed to show how people can still be sustainable in a concrete jungle, impelling its’ audience to join together and ‘make the skies blue again’.
Vera Castro Santos, the Green Officer of the MetFilm School Student Senate, shared her congratulations to our competition winners, as well as the wider efforts of MetFilm School for Earth Month 2023:
It was very inspiring to see the MetFilm School community so involved with the awareness campaign competitions.
Sustainability is something that has always been an ongoing topic at the School, and I can definitely see the commitment and passion that was shared amongst the entries. A huge congratulations to the winners!
MetFilm School has also partnered with ASUS, who have launched their ASUS ProArtist Awards 2023. Under the theme, ‘Seeing an Incredible Future’, ASUS invites entrants to ‘push the limits of creativity in search of new possibilities for our living planet’. Submissions are open until mid-July, with up to $60,000 in cash prizes, ASUS hardware, and international exposure to play for.
Sustainability at MetFilm School
As well as the School’s focused efforts for Earth Month 2023, our sustainability ambitions are a year-long commitment. In 2021, the School began an Education Partnership with Albert, ‘the home of environmental sustainability for film and television’. Through this partnership, students are provided with more in-depth course materials focused on sustainability, including topics such as:
- The science of climate change
- The environmental impact of the film and television industries
- The sustainable production practices that can mitigate against this impact
As well as this, students gain access to the Albert Calculator, a ‘bespoke carbon calculator designed for the film and television industries to help a production measure its carbon footprint, and to take steps towards reducing it’.
MetFilm School are committed to continuing innovation in respect of resourcing productions to lower carbon emissions. In September 2022, our London and Leeds campuses introduced more energy-efficient LED lighting systems (with Berlin to follow), and we have continued to work with film equipment suppliers such as Procam Take2, who adhere to sustainability action plans, and collaborative industry plans.
Finally, with our unique locations – being based within working film studios, the School is perfectly positioned to support the Albert ambition of a ‘studio sustainability standard practice’. This includes smaller, local initiatives, such as prop swap shops and food waste initiatives, and larger-scale plans, such as Garden Studios’ goal of becoming the most sustainable studio in London. Find out more about sustainability at Garden Studios on their website.