Leonardo DiCaprio says if the world has any chance at combating climate change, voters need to pick “people that are sane.”
“The main thing that it boils down to is, if you’re an individual, you, A, have to get involved,” the “Don’t Look Up” star and environmental activist said in an interview with Deadline published Tuesday.
“You have to vote for people that care about this issue and take science seriously. And we should not have any elected leaders, on a state level, on a city level, or a national level that don’t listen to science, especially in this country,” the 47-year-old Academy Award winner said.
“We’re all crossing our fingers that Biden can make one of the more substantial plans to at least implement renewables,” DiCaprio said. “So, vote. Vote for people that are sane.”
In “Don’t Look Up,” DiCaprio plays a scientist attempting to warn the country that a planet-crushing comet is on its way and will arrive in a matter of months. His character’s warnings are mocked by the faux president played by Meryl Streep, whose focus is on the upcoming midterm elections, and downplayed by a pop culture-obsessed media.
DiCaprio and director Adam McKay have said that the comet in the movie serves as a metaphor for the climate change crisis.
“By population, we are per capita the largest polluters in the world, and even scientists have been saying this for decades now. We need to set the example for the rest of the world to follow,” DiCaprio told Deadline. “We’re an incredibly rich nation and we need to make this transition.”
DiCaprio said he and McKay discussed whether to explicitly mention climate change in the film, which broke viewership records for Netflix.
“I remember Adam being a real stickler for not wanting to hit people over the head with that issue. To stick to the parable with the comet and, with the political stuff, try to show both sides of how science has become politicized,” DiCaprio said.
“For me, having done a lot of these documentaries, I had so many experiences with the communal frustration of the scientific community and got to meet so many amazing climate scientists that were so marginalized in the media. Who didn’t know how to navigate situations in which they are trying to articulate their expertise about the climate crisis, and then being put in a situation where they are, then, arguing the politics of it all.”
DiCaprio called out then-President Trump and other world leaders in 2019 for not taking climate action, saying, “Our future is being gambled away, and our leaders, those whom we entrust to protect us and set the example, are either failing to stop these dangerous trends or, in some cases, denying the very science of this climate catastrophe.”