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Will Parrinello Wins Best in Fest at the 2021 MY HERO International Film Festival

by Deborah Neff, MY HERO Staff writer from United States

146759Water for LifeWill Parrinello

The film, Rainforest Action, produced by Will Parrinello of the Mill Valley Film Group for the Goldman Environmental Prize, was awarded Best in Fest at the 2021 MY HERO International Film Festival for its portrayal of the remarkable accomplishments of Nemonte Nenquimo, a 2020 Goldman Environmental Prize winner.

“We are the protectors, we walk under the trees. This is life,” sings Nemonte Nenquimo at the beginning of the film. 

It’s not only their land that the community is fighting for, but all the indigenous Amazon communities and for the world: Nemonte is concerned about safeguarding the lungs of the planet, as she refers to the rainforest, for all of us.  

Nemonte is a member of the Waorani community of Nemonpare, a group of about 4,000 men, women, and children who live at the headwaters of the upper Amazon River. 

In 2020 Nemonte was named one of Time’s most influential people of the world, a win for Indigenous Rights across the region and the globe.

Nemonte received global attention after reaching a landmark victory in a lawsuit against the Ecuadorian government, which was trying to lease Waorani territory to oil companies. In the end, they were able to preserve half a million acres of rainforest and create an indefinite suspension of the option of using Indigenous land for oil. This set a huge precedent for indigenous rights, the environmental movement, and the self-determination of indigenous people throughout the world. 

Parrinello told MY HERO about the crew’s experience going on Nemonte’s “Toxic Tour,” where they visited remote sites outside the town of Shell (yes, That Shell), long abandoned by the oil refineries. 

We saw waste pools of residual crude that were spoiling the landscape, fouling the water, leaching carcinogens into the ground, water, and atmosphere. Nemonte looked heartsick and disgusted. When I asked if she was okay, she said, "I'm angry with these companies! They don't see the forest. They don’t see us. They only see what they want to see. They see oil wells where we see gardens. They see money where we see life." 

Will Parrinello

The film, Rainforest Action, produced by Will Parrinello of the Mill Valley Film Group for the Goldman Environmental Prize, was awarded Best in Fest at the 2021 MY HERO International Film Festival for its portrayal of the remarkable accomplishments of Nemonte Nenquimo, a 2020 Goldman Environmental Prize winner.

“We are the protectors, we walk under the trees. This is life,” sings Nemonte Nenquimo at the beginning of the film. 

It’s not only their land that the community is fighting for, but all the indigenous Amazon communities and for the world: Nemonte is concerned about safeguarding the lungs of the planet, as she refers to the rainforest, for all of us.  

Nemonte is a member of the Waorani community of Nemonpare, a group of about 4,000 men, women, and children who live at the headwaters of the upper Amazon River. 

In 2020 Nemonte was named one of Time’s most influential people of the world, a win for Indigenous Rights across the region and the globe.

Nemonte received global attention after reaching a landmark victory in a lawsuit against the Ecuadorian government, which was trying to lease Waorani territory to oil companies. In the end, they were able to preserve half a million acres of rainforest and create an indefinite suspension of the option of using Indigenous land for oil. This set a huge precedent for indigenous rights, the environmental movement, and the self-determination of indigenous people throughout the world. 

Parrinello told MY HERO about the crew’s experience going on Nemonte’s “Toxic Tour,” where they visited remote sites outside the town of Shell (yes, That Shell), long abandoned by the oil refineries. 

We saw waste pools of residual crude that were spoiling the landscape, fouling the water, leaching carcinogens into the ground, water, and atmosphere. Nemonte looked heartsick and disgusted. When I asked if she was okay, she said, "I'm angry with these companies! They don't see the forest. They don’t see us. They only see what they want to see. They see oil wells where we see gardens. They see money where we see life." 

Award-winning filmmaker Will Parrinello has been producing and directing Goldman Environmental Prize documentaries with his partner John Antonelli at the Mill Valley Film Group for the past 18 years. His current film, Water for Life, tells the powerfull story of three Indigenous water keepers in Central and South America, fighting to protect their water and land of their ancestors against the interest of the state, foreign governments and multinational corporations. 

“I like to tell stories about people, places and cultures that reveal the commonality in us all,” Will says on his website. 

Rainforest Action Film Credits:

Will Parrinello, Producer / Director
Goldman Environmental Prize, Executive Producer
Vicente Franco, Director of Photography
Sarah Kass, Writer
Quinn Costello, Editor
Mitchell Anderson, Field Producer
Francisco Gangotena, Sound Recordist 

To read the full story:  /will-parrinello-mill-valley-film-group-will-parrinello-wins-2021-best-in-fest

To view other Mill Valley Film Group films on MY HERO:

/mill-valley-film-group-goldman-environmental-prize-and-other-short-films

Will Parrinello and John Antonelli Mill Valley Film group 

Mill Valley Film Group:

www.mvfg.com

MY HERO International Film Festival:

To view the 2021 award winning films, go to /Winners

For more details about MY HERO's International Film Festival, please visit myhero.com/FilmFestival

 

The MY HERO Project is an international nonprofit learning platform that uses media, art and technology to shine a light on positive role models to help students of all ages realize their own potential to make positive change in the world.

Page created on 1/10/2022 3:49:02 PM

Last edited 1/10/2022 4:42:07 PM

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