New Global Warming Film by Randy Olson

The film we've all been waiting for ... Randy Olson (of Flock of Dodos fame) has produced a new film called Sizzle. In the film Olson uses the approach he used in Dodos to address the global warming issue. I have not seen the film but hope to review it soon.

Mean time, here's the press release in full:


Hollywood, Ca. (June 9, 2008) - The new feature film from scientist-turned-filmmaker Dr. Randy Olson ("Flock of Dodos: the evolution-intelligent design circus," Tribeca 2006, Showtime) titled, "Sizzle: A global warming comedy," will have it's world premiere at the Outfest Gay and Lesbian Film Festival on Saturday, July 19, 2008 in Hollywood, California. The east coast premiere takes place a week later as the Opening Night Film of the Woods Hole Film Festival on Saturday, July 26.

"The movie is both silly and serious," Dr. Olson says. "It's only fitting that we have a night of silliness in Hollywood at Outfest, followed by a night of seriousness at Woods Hole."

The Woods Hole debut features a post-screening panel discussion including Andy Revkin the top global warming journalist for the New York Times and author of the hugely popular Dot Earth blog. Other panel members include Dr. Gary Borisy, Director of the Marine Biological Laboratory of Woods Hole, Dr. Naomi Oreskes of U.C.S.D. who is in the movie, and Randy Olson.

The movie is a unique and original mixture of three genres: mockumentary, documentary, and reality. It is the story of a scientist-turned-filmmaker (Olson) forced to team up with two fabulous but flaky Hollywood producers (comic actors Brian Clark and Mitch Silpa), who give him a crew that includes a global warming skeptic (comic actor Alex Thomas). Olson valiantly leads his ragtag crew through a series of interviews with top climate scientists as well as a half dozen major global warming skeptics. In each interview, his cameraman interrupts the discussion to argue with the experts about his beliefs that global warming is little more than a scam.

After realizing his interviews fail to provide enough material for a documentary, Olson and his soundman (Ifeanyi Njoku) journey to New Orleans in search of "the human face of global warming," in time for the two year anniversary of Hurricane Katrina. What they encounter in the Lower Ninth Ward provides a somber, stark contrast to the silliness of making a documentary feature, and calls into question whether even the wealthiest nation on earth is ready to deal with major climate events predicted by global warming.

"It's a challenging film," Dr. Olson says. "It takes you on a journey from the superficiality of Hollywood environmentalism to the skepticism of conservative critics of global warming to the face of human suffering in New Orleans. And it's only fitting that we begin the release of the film with the gay community at Outfest. They seem to respect and appreciate the novel and creative approach we've taken to these two very important topics - global warming and Katrina - despite the current media saturation."

The music score for "Sizzle," comes from Grammy Award winner and Emmy nominee, legendary acoustic musician John McEuen -- co-founder of The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band and host of his own XM radio show, "Acoustic Traveler."

Tickets for both premieres go on sale in mid-June. At least a dozen universities are negotiating screening events in the fall featuring Dr. Olson joining post-screening panel discussions with global warming experts.

For information:


More like this

Well, I'm anxiously awaiting the July 19 premiere of scientist-filmmaker Randy Olson's newest feature, entitled Sizzle: A Global Warming Comedy. The website is now up, and the trailer looks hilarious, as do the other various clips available (hint, click on the planets--when you get to the website…
This just in: After a ragingly great world premiere of "Sizzle: A global warming comedy," at the Outfest Gay and Lesbian Film Festival last Saturday night, Randy Olson will appear on NPR for the second time in less than a week. This time on the Boston-based show, "Here and Now," as he talks further…
It's movie time again for my sometimes co-blogger, Dr. Randy Olson, who today opens the website for his new movie, "Sizzle: A global warming comedy." Just the fact that they have been invited to the Outfest Gay and Lesbian Film Festival of Los Angeles for their world premiere tells you that it's…
This morning, a plethora of Sizzle reviews will saturate Scienceblogs. I've no doubt that the film's science will be thoroughly dissected by more informed reviewers than I. So I'm going to steer clear of temperature trends and timetables, and instead consider how the film pitches its message.…

The Gay and Lesbian Film Festival is the perfect venue for this film.


(Rom 1:28 KJV) And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient;

(Rom 1:29 KJV) Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers,

(Rom 1:30 KJV) Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents,

(Rom 1:31 KJV) Without understanding, covenantbreakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful:

(Rom 1:32 KJV) Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.

And here I thought it was appropriate because the festival was going to be so hot. Come on, Steve, don't you find yourself getting a little warm just thinking about it? Is that why you couldn't trust your own words and had to resort to quoting an outdated version of an outdated document?

Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.

Don't you feel the judgment of God? For not only are homosexuals worthy of spiritual death and eternal punishment in hell's fire but also those who take pleasure in homosexual activities. Reprobate = morally abandoned minds. Unless you turn from your wicked way, there is no hope for your eternal soul.

Steve, if I find something wicked in my ways, I'm perfectly capable of dealing with it on my own, without the judgment of any gods. But no, the only judgment I feel here is yours. Don't you have some rules about that?

I felt the judgement of God once. Let's just say he's a little... underwhelming. I tried not to snicker, but it didn't make any difference, seeing how God is all omniscient and stuff. I told him they have creams and pumps to help with that, but he didn't take it so well, as he's got a very fragile ego. (Ever actually read the Old Testament, other than the parts your pastor told you to memorize? Talk about insecurities!)

As for "Wicked Ways"... Yes. I vote yes. I'm all about Teh Wicked. I revel in it. I wallow in it. I am the wanton Whore of Babylon, and I shall be coming into your dreams this very night.

If you're lucky, so will you.

(As an aside, has anyone else noticed the apparently strong correlation between homophobia and sexual self-repression? Has there been a good study done on that?)

Oh damn. I forgot the wicked laughter. I hate when I do that. Just insert it wherever you feel it's appropriate in that last comment.


I'm sorry, Janie. I couldn't hear your wicked laughter over my own. I'll just have to assume it was everywhere, since I can't reread your comment until the tears stop.

I don't know whether studies have been done, but the anecdotal evidence certainly calls for some. Of course, the problem is getting people to stop spouting bible verses long enough to answer the questions. Something about stereotyped behavior cropping up in uncomfortable situations--like rocking when you're upset.

(Rom 1:29 KJV) Being filled with all unrighteousness [polluting], fornication, wickedness [dumping excess CO2], covetousness [greed substituting for conservation], maliciousness [lies about damaging the environment]; full of envy [why can't the Chinese go first?], murder [how many will die if the sea rises 1 meter?], debate [it's over], deceit [let's ignore the data], malignity [damn hippies & tree-huggers]; whisperers [did you know that Al Gore is fat,

(Rom 1:30 KJV) Backbiters [McCain says that he is for the environment, but does he show up to vote?], haters of God [who created nature and made it 'good", despiteful [I'll buy an Expedition, that'll show them], proud [look at my cool Hummer], boasters [Hey, I can afford my Escalade, so screw you], inventors of evil things [all that money spent on producing and merchandising SUVs], disobedient to parents [Creator, Mother Nature...],

(Rom 1:31 KJV) Without understanding [how many have ignored the warnings], ...unmerciful [well, only the brown people will suffer]

I added some clues for you.
Oh, woe, now that teh gayz can marry, George & Laura will have to get a divorce.

By natural cynic (not verified) on 10 Jun 2008 #permalink

My wicked laughter is everywhere, Stephanie, and so am I.

I'll accept your apology this time, but next time there'll be some correction involved, and those tears will be quite different.


Dream about that, Steve.

Another problem with such a study Stephanie, is getting the homophobes to actually tell the truth.

God knows (heh) that's damned near impossible from the start.

Ummmm. . . .I fail to see what the fact that this film premiered at a gay film festival, has to do with the subject at hand. But maybe I'm just dumb.
Anne G

Alas, dear Stephanie, I so hate to be the bearer of bad tidings...

Anne, little or nothing really. Steve saw "Gay" and his brain froze over, kicking into automatic "Make sure no one finds out about me!" gear.

Mocking him mercilessly is the only appropriate response.


Doesn't describe any gay folks I've ever met, but the Bible trumps reality, doesn't it? (Actually, I read that back when I was a teenager and I thought it was a decent match for a number of my fellow students. The straight ones, anyways.)