BAFTA- and Oscar-winning prodco Off the Fence (My Octopus Teacher) has received its first order from YouTube Originals, for Laudato Si’, a feature documentary about Pope Francis’s second encyclical, which calls for “swift and unified global action” on contemporary issues including environmental degradation and climate change.
Laudato Si’ is produced in partnership with the Laudato Si’ Movement and in collaboration with the Vatican, and is currently in production for a YouTube premiere in early 2022.
The film promises to act as a wake-up call as well as a reminder of our responsibility to act in solidarity to preserve the planet, telling personal stories of people connected to the climate crisis on local, national and global levels.
Laudato Si’ is written and directed by Nicolas Brown, produced by Sam Barton-Humphreys and Off the Fence co-CEO Ellen Windemuth, and executive produced by Off the Fence co-CEO Bo Stehmeier and Tomás Insua. Susanne Daniels is YouTube’s global head of original content. Nadine Zylstra, head of family, learning and impact for YouTube Originals and Lauren Vrazilek and Amina Wilson on the learning and impact development team oversee Laudato Si’ for YouTube Originals.
“Sustainability and climate action are key areas of focus for our YouTube Originals programming,” said Zylstra in a release. “Off the Fence’s expertise in this space makes them the perfect fit to bring Pope Francis’ critical message to our global audience.”
“We are thrilled to be partnering with YouTube on this incredible project. Their reach will ensure everybody has access to the film and their creativity in content and form means a whole generation will be engaged with Laudato Si’‘s important message,” said Leila Monks, Off the Fence’s head of commissioning.
Added producer and Off the Fence co-CEO Ellen Windemuth: “This film is the place where people of many faiths convene with scientists to embrace Pope Francis’s vision for the future of our planet. Our film will adapt this important message into a beautiful character-driven story, shot all over the world.”
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