Despite being the official “Messenger of Peace for Climate Change,” according to the United Nations — and recently being wined and dined at the White House while showing his newest globe-trotting environmentalist documentary — Academy Award-winning actor Leonardo DiCaprio’s image as a passionate environmentalist is quickly being swallowed by charges of hypocrisy and shady dealings.
While currently being connected to the world’s biggest embezzlement case through his foundation and facing accusations of his own ridiculous carbon footprint, DiCaprio has decided his new strategy for saving the world from global warming includes a big-budget version of the terrible kids cartoon, “Captain Planet and the Planeteers.”
DiCaprio’s production company, Appian Way, has tapped Jono Matt and Glenn Powell to write a blockbuster version of Ted Turner’s propaganda cartoon that had an initial run on television from 1990 to 1992.
Turner, an outspoken liberal billionaire who crafted channels CNN and TBS, created the cartoon with one purpose in mind: “We need a superhero for the Earth,” he told MNN (Mother Nature Network).
“There is a lesson and message as well as great entertainment in every episode,” Turner said about his creation, which has survived through the years in the form of a reboot and comic series.
The strange-looking, globe-colored superhero is now the face of The Captain Planet Foundation, which looks to educate people about environmental issues and support global warming initiatives. “Our children can inherit a legacy of wastefulness, or an action plan that can save our planet. That is why we created ‘Captain Planet and the Planeteers,’” Turner is quoted as saying on the group’s website.
The show followed the subtly named Captain Planet as he assembles a group of five teenage “Planeteers,” each from different parts of the world. Planet and his group of Planeteers work to fight off the environmental misdoings of villains with names like Hoggish Greedly, Looten Plunder and Sly Sludge.
The corny series perhaps reached the height in fame when Funny or Die produced a parody video starring Don Cheadle mocking the extreme, on-the-nose nature of the cartoon. Now, blockbuster star DiCaprio is bringing Turner’s idea back to life.
The environmental project, which is reported to have a slight comedic spin, is continuing a trend for DiCaprio, who is focusing more and more on environmental projects. He currently has an environmental documentary entitled “Before the Flood,” which was recently screened at the White House, and an upcoming Netflix documentary, “The Ivory Game,” about ivory poaching in Africa.
Both the documentaries and the “Captain Planet” news seem like image-saving chess moves when measured up to DiCaprio’s hypocritical personal life. While he faces little scrutiny from the mainstream media as he pours money into “Captain Planet” propaganda and gets honored by the U.N., various reports have painted a not-so-flattering picture of the environmentalist.
For a man who so often warns of the dangers of global warming,DiCaprio takes awe-inducing amounts of private jet trips around the world, owns luxurious and gigantic homes, and parties on yachts to watch the World Cup.
Many may not see the man as the ideal candidate to give global warming the blockbuster, superhero treatment, as his image as a pure, do-gooder for the environment seems to be more and more of a facade.
His foundation, the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation, is facing similar scrutiny. Along with being attached to the world’s biggest embezzlement case, some have called for the group to be more forthcoming about its finances and charitable donations — something it is not legally required to do right now.