The Majestic Plastic Bag Opens at Sundance

‘The Majestic Plastic Bag’ Selected As One of 81 Films from Over 6,000 Submissions and Opens to Widespread Acclaim

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LOS ANGELES, Jan. 25, 2011 /PRNewswire/ — A mockumentary created by DDB Los Angeles for not-for-profit environmental watchdog organization Heal the Bay has been selected by the Sundance Institute as part of this week’s 2011 Sundance Film Festival’s Short Film Program. The program comprises only 81 short films from U.S. and international filmmakers selected from 6,467 submissions from 21 countries. “The Majestic Plastic Bag” was created to promote awareness of plastic pollution in California and directed by Jeremy Konner, who last year took home the Sundance Jury Prize in short filmmaking.

The playfully titled mockumentary, filmed in the style of a nature channel documentary program, is narrated by Academy Award winner Jeremy Irons and tracks the “migration” of a plastic bag from a grocery store parking lot to the “Great Pacific Garbage Patch” in the Pacific Ocean. The film was released in August of 2010 just as the California Senate prepared to vote on a measure that would create a uniform statewide policy for addressing all types of single-use bags.

“‘The Majestic Plastic Bag’ is a bold example of how creativity and storytelling can play a significant role in raising awareness and, hopefully, affecting policy,” said Matt Reinhard, Executive Creative Director of DDB Los Angeles.  “It’s also a great example of DDB’s belief in Social Creativity, the notion that the most effective and compelling ideas are those that people want to play with, participate in, and pass on.”

Though lighthearted in tone, the short film highlights the stark reality of California’s plastic bag pollution situation: 19 billion bags are used every year, creating over 123,000 tons of unnecessary waste, costing taxpayers $25 million in cleanup costs a year. The film quickly attracted the attention of local, national and international press, and in November Los Angeles County banned the use of single-use plastic bags at grocery stores, pharmacies and other shops. In December the city of San Josefollowed with a vote to ban disposable plastic bags at all retail locations.

“The Majestic Plastic Bag” will air a total of five times during the festival, which runs from January 20 to January 30, 2011. The remaining screenings of “The Majestic Plastic Bag” include:

  • Thursday, Jan 27, 10:30 p.m., Broadway Centre Cinema IV, SLC
  • Friday, January 28, 9:15 p.m., Holiday Village Cinema II, Park City
  • Saturday, Jan 29, 7:30 p.m., Broadway Centre Cinema IV, SLC

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