White Gold red carpet

We chat to Sigourney Weaver, Simon Trevor and Arne Glimcher as stars come out to support elephant doc.

by Anne-Katrin Titze

White Gold producer Arne Glimcher and director Simon Trevor
White Gold producer Arne Glimcher and director Simon Trevor Photo: Anne-Katrin Titze
Documentarian Albert Maysles in support of documentary White Gold in 2013
Documentarian Albert Maysles in support of documentary White Gold in 2013 Photo: Anne-Katrin Titze
Sigourney Weaver, Chuck Close, Iman, Joel Ehrenkranz, James Franco, Agnes Gund, and Uma Thurman hosted an advance screening of Simon Trevor's forceful documentary White Gold on the organised poaching of elephant tusks, narrated by former US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton at the Museum of Modern Art on the evening of Wednesday, November 12. Albert Maysles, Barbara Kopple, Meredith Vieira, Christie Brinkley, Stacy Bendet, Hanneli Mustaparta, Tara Subkoff, Kyleigh Kuhn, Mia Moretti, Cynthia Rowley, David Schwimmer with Zoe Buckman, among others, walked the red carpet in support of the cause.

Arne Glimcher, founder of Pace gallery and the producer of White Gold, Simon Trevor and Sigourney Weaver spoke with me before the screening on the importance a film can make by bringing awareness for the protection of wildlife.

Anne-Katrin Titze: Thank you for this important film. I gave White Gold a five-star review on Eye For Film yesterday.

Simon Trevor: That's wonderful!

Arne Glimcher: Oh, I read it. It's great. Thank you so much.

AKT: Tell me about your collaboration with Simon Trevor.

White Gold goody bags and poster
White Gold goody bags and poster Photo: Anne-Katrin Titze
AG: We've been making films together for 15 years. We've a foundation in Africa called the African Environmental Film Foundation. Simon is the president, I am chairman, and we make films for Africans in their own dialect on conservation issues. Most of the films you see are for Western consumption. So Simon shoots and directs these movies and we distribute them in Africa to remote villages, to schools, to television. This is what we're doing on economic independence and conservation.

AKT: Who is the audience you want to reach with White Gold?

AG: This film is the first film we're doing for International [audiences].

Simon Trevor jumps in: Because the poaching situation is so dire, that we just felt we had to do this. We couldn't sit by and watch all those elephants being killed without trying to make everybody aware of this.

White Gold puts an end to fantasies of glamour and harmless luxury based on ignorance and lies.

AKT: It's great to see the line-up for this event tonight, all the fashion people coming, because this is one of the industries where this awareness is so super important, because of the luxury goods. We should talk some more in the following days.

AG: I'd love to. It's so complex.

Next, I had a chance to speak with Weaver, who was honoured to introduce the post-screening discussion.

Sigourney Weaver, who worked with Simon Trevor and Arne Glimcher on Gorillas In The Mist
Sigourney Weaver, who worked with Simon Trevor and Arne Glimcher on Gorillas In The Mist Photo: Anne-Katrin Titze
AKT: How did you get involved with this project?

Sigourney Weaver: Arne Glimcher was the producer of Gorillas In The Mist (1988) and Simon Trevor was our photographer, our cameraman of all the footage that we did with the wild mountain gorillas.

AKT: You've known them since then and the cause is similar.

SW: Yes, a long time ago. I think that film was instrumental in saving the mountain gorillas. And I hope this film will wake people up to how fast the elephants are being depleted. I hope it shows people who care about elephants how to help. I think it's going to be a difficult evening in that I imagine the film to be very powerful.

AKT: It is. The Hollywood and fashion people here tonight should know where their objects of luxury come from. Don't you think?

SW: I absolutely agree. I didn't know they were all coming tonight. But that's good!

DOC NYC has a special event screening on Monday, November 18 at 7pm - IFC Center. Scheduled to appear: Director Simon Trevor with producer Arne Glimcher.

Artist Chuck Close on the White Gold red carpet
Artist Chuck Close on the White Gold red carpet Photo: Anne-Katrin Titze
Model Iman on the red carpet
Model Iman on the red carpet Photo: Anne-Katrin Titze

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