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Plastic is a revolutionary material. It’s durable, affordable, multi-functional - and it has pushed our planet to the brink of one of the worst environmental crisis in modern history.


Plastic is also a topic surrounded by a lot of confusion and misleading information. WHY PLASTIC? is a three-part investigative documentary series that will bust the myths and misinformation, taking a closer look at what is fact and what is fiction.


Each film investigates a different aspect of plastic pollution: Recycling, Human Health and The Industry.


We believe that civic education and free access to reliable media is a critical step in addressing social issues and effecting change. Documentary film is a powerful tool, helping to convey important information and spread knowledge. WHY PLASTIC? will help to create a nuanced, factual debate around plastic pollution and the problems connected to it, such as the climate crisis, environmental justice and public health.

FILMS

After two years of researching, following the money and talking to the leading experts, we are ready to present three cutting-edge documentary films, unlike any plastic documentaries made before.


Filmed across the globe and revealing the latest scientific research, WHY PLASTIC? will bring uncomfortable facts to the table, confronting the audience with surprising findings as well as powerful narratives of the lives of those directly affected by plastic pollution.


The films will dig deep into what happens to our plastic trash, investigate industry pledges as well as unveil the local and global effects our plastic use has on the environment - and on our health.

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WHY PLASTIC?
Short film

End Effect

Karolina Wyrwal

2021

Shortlisted for the Odense Film Festival's WHY PLASTIC short film competition.

End Effect is a creative take on our over consumption of plastic - an interpretation of the ramifications of our lives with plastic.

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WHY PLASTIC?
Short film

By the Sea

Lynn Bianchi

2021

Shortlisted for the Odense Film Festival's WHY PLASTIC short film competition.

With the rate of plastic pollution in oceans increasing at an alarming rate, our beaches are on route to be less peaceful and more polluted. By the Sea gives us a dystopian idea of what our beaches might look like in the future, if we continue at this rate.

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WHY PLASTIC?
Campaign

WHY PLASTIC? campaign trailer

THE WHY presents WHY PLASTIC? an investigative media campaign about the causes, consequences and possible solutions to plastic pollution.

Plastic is a topic surrounded by a lot of confusion and misleading information. This documentary series will bust the myths and misinformation surrounding plastic and take a close look at what is fact and what is fiction. Soon we will be ready to present three cutting-edge documentary films, unlike any plastic documentaries made before. WHY PLASTIC? consists of three one-hour investigative documentary films that will be broadcasted at BBC and our 70+ broadcasting partners all over the world. They will also be made available free of charge to schools, universities, libraries, museums, and community organizations. The films will complement each other and provide a holistic overview as well as in-depth stories of plastic pollution.

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WHY PLASTIC?
Short film

Plastic Ecosystem

Stefie Gan

2021

Shortlisted for the Odense Film Festival's WHY PLASTIC short film competition.

Plastic Ecosystem is a stop motion film by Stefie Gan, that shows us what it might be like to have an eco system that consists entirely of plastic - a future that we may have to face, if the global consumption of plastic is not reduced.

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WHY PLASTIC?
Campaign

The Dangers of Plastic to Human Health

How much plastic is getting in to your body and affecting your health? THE WHY went to the Plastic Health Summit in Amsterdam to find out.

How much plastic is getting in to your body and affecting your health? THE WHY went to the Plastic Health Summit in Amsterdam. There, scientists presented the first results from their research on the effects of micro and nano plastics on human health. The research is part of THE WHY new series WHY PLASTIC?, to be released in 2021. If you want to dig deeper, check out our article on plastic particles: https://www.thewhy.dk/news/the-many-dangers-of-micro-and-nano-plastic-particles-should-we-all-be-panicking

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WHY PLASTIC?
Short film

PlastiC

Sachin Vs

2021

Winner of the Odense Film Festival's WHY PLASTIC short film competition

PlastiC is a stop motion film about the damaging effects of plastic pollution on ocean animals and their ecosystems. Plastic is a revolutionary material. It’s durable, it’s affordable, it’s multi-functional - and it has pushed our planet to the brink of one of the worst environmental crises in modern history.

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WHY PLASTIC?
Short film

Un Vestige

IFF Robin

2021

Shortlisted for the Odense Film Festival's WHY PLASTIC short film competition.

Un Vestige is a French short film that depicts a little girl making an unusual discovery - a plastic bag on a beach. This film shows us what it might be like to have future without waste, where plastic is a distant memory.

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WHY PLASTIC?
Documentary

The Recycling Myth

Do you know what happens with your plastic trash?

In the last few years the plastic pollution crisis has become an international scandal. Pictures of dead animals, littered rivers, and polluted oceans have shocked the world. The plastic packaging industry has declared it knows how to solve the problem: recycling. Increasingly, bottles, boxes and sachets are proudly stamped with the words ‘100% recyclable’ as brands compete to reassure consumers that their packaging purchases are guilt-free. But if recycling is really the solution, why is the world pumping out more virgin plastic than ever before? Could recycling really be the ultimate greenwash? We follow the money into an industry that’s designed to hide the problem rather than solve it. We track the black-market brokers who hunt for countries to dump our plastic, waste moguls getting rich by burning trash, and the organised criminals for whom waste smuggling is now as lucrative as human trafficking. And we show how some of the biggest consumer-goods brands on earth spin the recycling fairytale as a way to allow them to continue polluting without consequence. As we all pick up the bill for a world drowning in plastic, the film asks: who is getting rich? This film will be broadcast through ARD, DR, SVT, NRK, CBC, NHK and SRF/RTS/RSI. EBU, DANIDA and Rogovy Foundation supported the production. Dates to be confirmed.

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WHY PLASTIC?
Short film

Mad About Plastic

Anna Sobczyk

2022

It takes 5.3 liters of water to make a single-use plastic bottle. What if everyone had access to tap water instead?

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WHY PLASTIC?
Short film

A Small Deed

Prachi Bari

2021

Shortlisted for the Odense Film Festival's WHY PLASTIC short film competition.

The Pune Ploggers is an Indian group of trash collectors. Their concept is simple, combine jogging with picking up waste from the streets. A small deed that makes a difference.

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WHY PLASTIC?
Short film

Palastik

Asghar Besharati

2021

Shortlisted for the Odense Film Festival's WHY PLASTIC short film competition.

Around 500 billion plastic bags are used every year. That's almost 1 million every minute. What happens to them?

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WHY PLASTIC?
Documentary

Coca-Cola's Plastic Promises

Can the world's largest soft-drinks producer turn the tide on plastic waste?

The soft drinks industry has faced growing criticism of the use of single-use plastic. In 2018 Coca-Cola, the world’s largest soft drinks producer, set ambitious targets to reduce the amount of its plastic packaging that ends up in the environment. It said that by 2030 it would collect one bottle or can for every one it sold and make them from 50% recycled material. Coke’s plan is to eliminate waste by turning old bottles into new ones. In this film, we investigate Coca-Cola’s World Without Waste strategy. Could it be a shining example for the whole beverage industry? Or is Coke’s plan to recycle its way out of the problem fundamentally flawed? And how well, after three years, is Coca-Cola doing around the world in meeting the commitments it has made? This film will be broadcast through BBC Panorama, ARTE/ZDF, DR, SVT, NRK, CBC and SRF/RTS/RSI. EBU and DANIDA supported the production. Dates to be confirmed.

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WHY PLASTIC?
Documentary

We The Guinea Pigs

What effect does our plastic use have on human health?

Could it be that we are all involuntary participants in a huge experiment, threatening humankind? According to the researchers in "We The Guinea Pigs", this might very well be the case. As plastic has gained ground in our lives over the years, there has been an inexplicable increase in a number of diseases and disorders. In the past, 1 in 20 women used to get breast cancer -  today it is one in eight. Men's sperm quality has been halved in 50 years. And the number of children and adults who are diagnosed with attention deficit disorders has increased explosively. In the film, we meet leading researchers as well as follow case studies of ordinary people. The 40-year-old woman who has aggressive breast cancer, involuntarily childless couples and the young woman with ADHD. Are these people the victims of unfortunate coincidences - or is there an explanation? The researchers are in no doubt.  They know that our natural hormones can be disturbed by chemicals from, among other things, plastic. Experiments on animals have shown that it is especially in fetal life that adverse health effects can occur. Before you were even born, it could be that you were pre-programmed to get various diseases and disorders later in life. This film will be broadcast through ARTE, DR, SVT, NRK, CBC, NHK and SRF/RTS/RSI. EBU and DFI supported the production. Dates to be confirmed.

DIG DEEPER

Even though it might appear simple at surface level, plastic pollution can be difficult to get a grip off. The problem is too complex to be solved with simple solutions, yet this is the way we often talk about it. With so much information available, it is also sometimes hard to separate fact from fiction. If after seeing the films, you feel like knowing more, we have gathered some resources you can use to expand your horizon and dig a little deeper.

NORDIC NETWORK

We believe in documentary films as powerful tools to spark debates and discussions.

THE WHY partners up with organisations all over the world, to ensure that our films get seen by as many people as possible.

Global Network

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NEWS

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FOR MORE INFORMATION on how you can support us please get in touch with us info@thewhy.dk 
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