British actress and producer Keira Knightley has called climate change “the most urgent issue of our time” as she lent her voice to a short animated film by Extinction Rebellion focused on the climate crisis.
In the film, entitled Climate Crisis, and Why We Should Panic, Knightley sets out what is causing climate change, why governments need to enter “crisis mode” to tackle the issue and what will happen if it is not dealt with now.
The Atonement star said: “I wanted to speak out in support of Extinction Rebellion. Lending my voice to the most urgent issue of our time felt like the right way for me to take a stand in the hope that we can leave a world worth living in for our children.”
The film, which is the second in a two-part video series for global environment movement Extinction Rebellion, has been written, directed and animated by Miritte Ben Yitzchak.
The first film, Extinction Emergency, and Why We Must Act Now, was voiced by British actress Naomie Harris and scored by Brian Eno, and focused on the ecological crisis, including the planet’s biodiversity loss and “runaway consumerism”.
Knightley, who is a supporter of various humanitarian causes, said that climate change and the ecological crisis are “two sides of the same problem”.
“This animation explains the climate change aspect in a no-nonsense way – though the message is horrifying to hear,” she added.
Serena Schellenberg, who produced both films in the series, said that Knightley was known for “her compassion for the environment as well being a young mother, she was the perfect fit”.
“The beautiful way that she narrates the film with both despair and hope is very compelling,” Schellenberg added.
The film is due for release on 28 August.
Yitzchak said: “I used to think of the climate and ecological crisis as an issue that needed addressing, but it was only with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s report published in October 2018 that I realised we were running out of time to prevent a catastrophe that will have devastating consequences to the lives of millions of people.”
Extinction Rebellion has confirmed that on 1 September it plans to peacefully blockade parliament as it reopens, following the news that the UK government’s own Committee on Climate Change has warned to prepare for 4 degrees Celsius of warming.