Crude (2009 film)
|Directed by||Joe Berlinger|
|Produced by||Joe Berlinger
|Music by||Wendy Blackstone|
Juan Diego Pérez
|Editing by||Alyse Ardell Spiegel|
|Distributed by||Entendre Films
Red Envelope Entertainment
Third Eye Motion Picture
First Run Features
|Running time||100 minutes|
The film follows the progress during 2006 and 2007 of a $27 billion legal case brought against the Chevron Corporation following the drilling of the Lago Agrio oil field, a case described by activists as an “Amazon Chernobyl”.
The plaintiffs of the class action lawsuit are 30,000 Ecuadorians living in the Amazonian rainforest who claim their ancestral homeland has been polluted by the oil industry. In addition to the legal struggle, Crude shows interviews from representatives of the plaintiffs and defendants of the class action lawsuit, and explores the influence of media support such as Vanity Fair, celebrity activism including support from musical artist Sting and his wife Trudie Styler, the power of multinational corporations, the shifting power in Ecuadorian politics, and rapidly-disappearing indigenous cultures explored in the movie.
The film ends with a prediction the lawsuit will not be resolved for another decade or so unless an out of court settlement is arranged.
- Juan Diego Perez
- Pocho Alvarez
- Joe Berlinger (producer of Crude)
- Michael Bonfiglio
- Sting (activist, artist and co-founder of Rainforest Foundation Fund)
- Trudie Styler (activist, producer, and co-founder of Rainforest Foundation Fund with her husband Sting)
- Adolfo Callejas (Ecuadorian lawyer on behalf of Chevron-Texaco)
- Steve Donziger (American lawyer on behalf of the plaintiffs)
- Pablo Fajardo (Ecuadorian lawyer on behalf of the plaintiffs)
- Diego Larrea (Ecuadorian Lawyer on behalf of Chevron-Texaco)
- Rafael Correa (President of the Republic of Ecuador)
- Sara McMillen (Chief Environmental Scientist for Chevron)
- Ricardo Reis Veiga (Corporate counsel for Chevron Latin America)
Subpoena of Footage
On May 6, 2010 federal judge Lewis Kaplan sided with a petition submitted by Chevron and ruled that Berlinger turn over more than 600 hours of original footage created during the film's production. Chevron had sought to subpoena the footage as part of the ongoing lawsuit discussed in the film. Berlinger's legal team has maintained that the footage is protected by reporters' privilege and has indicated it intends to appeal the court's decision.
As of 23 March 2010, the movie review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes gave Crude a 95% "fresh" rating.
Film festivals (partial list)
- Sundance Film Festival, United States
- San Francisco International Film Festival, United States
- SILVERDOCS: AFI/Discovery Channel Documentary Festival, United States
- Sydney Film Festival, Australia
- One World Film Festival, Czech Republic
- Thessaloniki Documentary Festival, Greece
- Independent Film Festival of Boston, United States
- Cleveland International Film Festival, United States
- True/False Film Festival, United States
- Nashville Film Festival, United States
- Newport Beach Film Festival, United States
- Little Rock Film Festival, United States
- Jacksonville Film Festival, United States
- Sarasota Film Festival, United States
- Lake Placid Film Festival, United States
- Sidewalk Moving Picture Festival, United States
- Amazonia for Sale
- The Coconut Revolution
- MSNCBC/AP "Up to $16 billion fine against Chevron advised", April 8, 2008.
- Crude at the Internet Movie Database
- New York Times, 6 May 2010, Judge Rules that Filmmaker Must Give Footage to Chevron
- New York Times, 22 January 2009, In the Snows of Sundance, a Marked Chill in the Air
- AlterNet, 26 August 2009, 'Crude': The Film Chevron Doesn't Want You to See
- Official website
- Crude at the Internet Movie Database
- Joe Berlinger interview at Sundance Channel
- Crude court order video report at Democracy Now!