UK comedy goes "Beyond The Pole" to save planet

Tue Feb 2, 2010 5:48am EST
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By Nina Chestney

LONDON (Reuters Life!) - Amid the doom and gloom that has followed the lackluster outcome to last December's U.N. summit to save the planet from global warming, it takes a brave man to make a comedy about climate change.

That is exactly what British director David L. Williams did with the film "Beyond The Pole," which is due for British release on February 12 at London's Institute of Contemporary Arts.

The film follows the adventure of two friends who set out to complete the first carbon neutral, vegetarian and organic expedition to the North Pole.

Amateur explorers Mark (Stephen Mangan) and Brian (Rhys Thomas) embark on the expedition, in hopes of attaining a Guinness world record and to draw attention to the issue of global warming. The problem is, they are both totally under-prepared for the trip's challenges.

En route, they tackle vengeful polar bears, encounter a rival homosexual Norwegian expedition team and struggle to cope with Mark's deteriorating psychological state.

With the failure of December's U.N. talks in Copenhagen to draw up a legally binding climate pact still fresh in people's minds, surely poking fun at the potentially devastating issue of climate change is no laughing matter?

Williams disagrees. He insists comedy was necessary to attract a wide cross-section of people to the film and make them think about global warming.

"The comedy route gets more traction. If you have a point of view and send yourself up a bit, you draw people in," Williams told Reuters in an interview.   Continued...