It’s been ten years since Ellen DeGeneres took a live action film role – well, outside of TV movies anyhow. Back then she was in the one-two double whammy of EdTV and The Love Letter, both of which I saw and neither of which I enjoyed (though The Love Letter was just a normal kind of bad). Since then, Ellen has had her TV shows – sitcom and chat – and a star turn as Dory in Pixar’s Finding Nemo, so the last decade has actually been pretty kind to her.
Why then, do you suppose, that she’s sticking her neck out there for a high-concept FX comedy from a Sex and the City screenwriter and produced by Walden Media (and all that implies)?
I’m a little confused by the choice, I have to admit. Maybe Jenny Bick‘s screenplay is absolute dynamite? I certainly hope so. That’s a much better reason than wanting to, I dunno, push pseudo-subtle, quasi-coherent intelligent design propaganda on the wee kiddies.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, the film’s concept originated from an original idea within Walden (there’s a first time for everything) and relates the story of Mather Nature’s first return to Earth since it’s original creation (told you so). Ten dollars says Mother Nature is not impressed by what she sees and tries to teach us naughty humans the error of our ways. Ten more dollars says that proceedings take a rather hideous turn for the sanctimonious and I end up pleading Ellen to get straight back out there and make another movie as a kind of cinematic sorbet and take the nasty taste away.
A quote from Ellen suggests that her character is going to possess control over the weather.
I’ve always wanted to control the weather. Nothing will stop me from doing this… neither rain, nor snow, nor sleet. I may be thinking of the postal service -but I’m really excited about the movie.
There have been a big spate of environmentally themed films over the last five years or so, and you’d have to be rather misguided to either wonder why or begrudge any of them their shot at helping save us from ourselves. This one, however, might be the first one to play as entertainment to families. That could, in some very small way, be particularly helpful. Offset this potential use against the huge carbon cost in making the film, however, and… well. It better be a pretty persuasive film.
Fancy planting a few mammoth forrests, Walden? That would be really putting your money where your mouth is.