In pic: Leonardo DiCaprio speaks at the United Nations Climate Summit in New York in 2014. Photograph: (Getty)
'We cannot afford, at this critical moment in time, to have leaders in office that do not believe in the modern science of climate change,' Leonardo DiCaprio said
Hollywood actor and environmental activist Leonardo DiCaprio wants his upcoming documentary on climate change to release ahead of the US presidential elections in November in order to be able to influence voter's decisions in time. Titled 'Before the Flood', the film features Leonardo's interviews with world leaders as he assesses the impact of industrialisation and possible solutions.
Before the Flood releases in New York and Los Angeles theaters on October 21 and airs globally on National Geographic on October 30.
"We wanted this film to come out before the next election because, the United States is the largest contributor to this issue. We cannot afford, at this critical moment in time, to have leaders in office that do not believe in the modern science of climate change," the Hollywood heartthrob said at the world premiere of the film at the Toronto International Film Festival on Friday.
"The fact that we are still debating any of this is just utter insanity to me," he added.
Leonardo and actor-filmmaker Fisher Stevens take off on a journey from Canada's oil sands to tiny Pacific islands, interviewing world leaders such as the Catholic Church's Pope Francis and US President Barack Obama, climate scientists and academics.
Leonardo, who won an Oscar this year for the role of a fur trapper battling nature in The Revenant, was an executive producer on the 2014 Oscar-nominated documentary Virunga about the threatened gorillas in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
The film calls out the sizable minority of Republican lawmakers, including presidential candidate Donald Trump and former candidates Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz, who deny the scientific evidence of the damage to the environment from human activity.
The 'gloom' comes from Leo and the 'hope' from Stevens, the pair said at the question and answer session that followed the screening.
The film also criticises those who fund anti-environment groups for commercial gain.
"The Koch brothers aren't denying it, they just want to make money," Stevens said, referring to Charles and David Koch who have founded and funded conservative and libertarian political organizations.
This year, he is an executive producer on Netflix documentary "The Ivory Game," about Africa's illegal ivory trade, also making its debut at the Toronto film festival.
(WION with inputs from AFP)