Jonas Fredwall Karlsson Helps Vanity Fair Tackle Climate Change
The celebrity group photo has become a hallmark for Vanity Fair, but when Jonas Fredwall Karlsson got this group photo together, it was something a little different. With James Cameron, Jerry Weintraub, David Gelber, Joel Bach, and Arnold Schwarzenegger, they were here to talk about more than just the next Hollywood blockbuster. They were here to talk about the future of our planet.
All five of these men are the executive producers of the new Showtime series, “Years of Living Dangerously.” The series digs elbow deep into the human stories surrounding climate change. This isn’t episodes on melting icebergs and polar bears, but rather the devastation from superstorms, the depletion of entire ecosystems, the country of Yemen running out of water entirely. Frequently, when it comes to these high-powered group photos, they’re shot separately and put together during post. But Jonas got to shoot everyone together, all in the room at the same time. [Jonas' quote on them all being together] Placement is usually dictated by status and ego. But everyone was focused on the job at hand, to bring attention to their project.] As James Cameron says, “This is the biggest story of our time, and this is the time to tell it.”
To tell it, Cameron, Weintraub, and Co. put together a list of correspondents of some of the most recognizable faces in the world, including Harrison Ford, Chris Hayes, and Lesley Stahl. They went out and traveled the world, crystallizing the innumerable global levels that this is affecting. From trekking across polar ice caps, to venturing into Indonesian tropical forests
The issue is social, political, and economic. There are debates to be had, but very little of it is on the science. As President Barack Obama says in the series, “We can argue about how [to handle it], but let’s not argue about what’s going on. The science is compelling.” Jonas agrees, having spent time in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina, he's particularly sensitive to the devastation that is being faced by those affected by Climate Change. “It’s enormously important. It’s changing the whole world,” says Jonas. He says he is a positive person, so we can turn it around. “We have to,” he implores.
Despite the serious subject matter, the shoot wasn't all doom and gloom. Everyone was able to find a smile for at least one picture.