Sony Pictures Television Networks (SPTN), in partnership with the United Nations Foundation, today announced that internationally renowned musical artist Anggun has been named global judge for the Picture This Festival for the Planet (www.sonypicturethis.com), a short-film competition for emerging filmmakers, everyday storytellers and changemakers worldwide to showcase the positive future they see for our planet. Also joining an esteemed list of judges announced in the past several weeks are YouTube vloggers Damon and Jo, who will serve as the first and only digital-native judges for the festival.
Anggun, a World Music Award winning artist whose single What We Remember is currently on the Billboard Dance Charts in the US, is a judge on the hit-rated series, “Asia’s Got Talent,” and United Nations Goodwill Ambassador (2009-2017).
Anggun said: “I am very proud to be a global judge for the Picture This Festival. As an environmentally-conscious individual and artist, I believe delivering optimistic messages is the best path to creating public awareness. This festival emphasizes that creativity, imagination and visual talent can make an impact on how we can create a better and more sustainable future.”
Damon and Jo, otherwise known as Damon Dominique and Jo Franco, are digital content creators, entrepreneurs, travel experts and authors who have over 1 million followers across YouTube, Instagram and Facebook. The duo are currently in production on their Facebook Watch series Damn Millennials and recently released their first e-book Woke all while running their YouTube channel and travel site, Shut Up and Go.
Damon and Jo said: “In any given month, we may find ourselves in several different continents. Our passion for traveling, learning languages, documenting, and encouraging others to do the same is because we feel that the Earth's story can be told through every day perspectives. And more importantly, if people see the conditions of what's out there, and experience it either through our lens or that of their own eye, they'll be more empowered to take action and help what's important to them.”
Entries opened in January, with people from over 70 countries submitting videos between one and eight minutes in length inspired by the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), a set of global goals agreed upon by all 193 member states of the United Nations to end poverty, protect the planet and promote prosperity for all.
Partners in this year's festival are: the United Nations Foundation, the United Nations Association of the United States of America, WeTransfer, Sony World Photography Awards, Sony Alpha Universe, the Environmental Media Association, Connect4Climate and leaders and environmental visionaries from around the globe. SPTN launched a similar contest in 2016 across its channel portfolio worldwide, including its flagship brands AXN, Sony Channel, Crackle and Animax and those same flagship channels will participate in this year’s festival.
In addition to Anggun, Damon and Jo, the list of celebrity advocates and industry leaders who will judge film submissions includes: Megan Boone, environmental advocate and actress from the hit TV series “The Blacklist”; Elizabeth Cousens, Deputy Chief Executive Officer, United Nations Foundation; Mr. N.P. Singh, MD & CEO, Sony Pictures Networks India; Marie Jacobson, EVP Programming & Production, Sony Pictures Television Networks; Tom Bernard & Michael Barker, Co-Presidents, Sony Pictures Classics; Glenn Gainor, President of Physical Production, Screen Gems; Debbie Levin, President & CEO, Environmental Media Association; and Damian Bradfield, President and Chief Marketing Officer, WeTransfer.
This summer, eight (8) regional winners will be flown to Los Angeles to attend the Picture This Festival for the Planet for a day of networking and training alongside industry leaders and social impact partners at the Sony Pictures Studio lot, followed by a screening of the regional winners’ films. Regional winners will receive airfare and accommodations for two nights in Los Angeles, along with a Sony RX0 Camera and a one year WeTransfer Plus account, with the grand prize winner honored with a Sony A6500 camera and a SEL1670 lens.
The Picture This Festival for the Planet is Sony Pictures Entertainment’s latest project to bring awareness to the SDGs. In 2016, the United Nations and SPE launched Angry Birds for a Happy Planet, a global youth outreach campaign that leveraged online and social media platforms to encourage action to protect the planet and fight climate change. Centered on the Sustainable Development Goal #13 – to take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts, the campaign featured Red and other characters of The Angry Birds Movie. In 2017, supported by the cast of the Smurfs: The Lost Village, audiences were encouraged to join “Team Smurfs” for the “Small Smurfs Big Goals” campaign that inspired everyone to learn about and support the 17 Sustainable Development Goals.
Submissions for the Picture This Festival for the Planet opened January 30 and will close April 30. The contest will be open to entrants from select countries worldwide. Please visit sonypicturethis.com for more information and to enter for free. You can follow the Picture This Festival on social media on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.