STORY HIGHLIGHTS


"AMAZON" director on amazon rainforest blaze

CNC
Added On September 7, 2019

INTRO
 
Fires continue to blaze in the Amazon rainforest. 
 
And CNC recently spoke to Kieth Merrill, who once spent a year living in the Amazon basin and directed the Academy Award-nominated film, Amazon.
 
Let's take a look.
 
PKG
 
Oscar-winner Kieth Merrill has filmed a wide range of both the natural and the man-made wonders of the world since 1967.
 
And in the 1990s, Merrill set foot in the Amazon basin and explored the mysterious Indian tribes living in the rainforest to film sequences for his feature documentary, Amazon.
 
CNC recently interviewed Merrill, during his 5-day visit in north China's Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region for preparatory work of his new film.
 
SOUNDBITE(English): KIETH MERRILL, American Filmmaker
"You assume that we walk through the Amazon, there's going to be snakes hanging from the alligators and all these things. We had a very hard time finding wildlife in the Amazon. We actually had to hire the natives, the Indians who lived there to go out and catch us snakes and catch us crocodiles, and then bring them to us. And they would film them."
 
Merrill has paid close attention to the Amazon forest fires, which he called "a horrible disaster".
 
SOUNDBITE(English): KIETH MERRILL, American Filmmaker
"It's easy to talk about it. It's easy to say great future, preserve the planet, but finding the balance, that's the challenge."
 
Merrill said only when human beings give up the arrogance of controlling everything, can they keep the balance between human and nature.
 
SOUNDBITE(English): KIETH MERRILL, American Filmmaker
"We should be a little more humble, a little more realistic, that we are not in charge of the earth. For a perfect example is Yellowstone national park. About ten years ago, they had a fire, a devastating fire. And everybody just thought, this is the end of Yellowstone. But what they didn't realize is that the fire was almost like the earth knew that it was time to clean out the wood. People, instead of clearing out the dead fall, they said, no, we don't touch nature, leave nature alone. Then the next year, all of a sudden, wait a minute. Look at all this new growth, all these little things that have been kept away. And now it's more beautiful than it ever was."
 
Since Merrill holds the opinion that nature has a remarkable resiliency and that it can bounce back, he showed optimism, despite the devastating forest fires Brazil is experiencing.
 
SOUNDBITE(English): KIETH MERRILL, American Filmmaker
"I'm not the expert, so I have to be careful what I say. I'm optimistic because I don't think we're in charge of the planet. But there, but the earth has a mind of its own. The earth has a destiny of its own. Volcanoes, tornadoes, tsunamis, all of those things, those are natural phenomena. I think we should do everything we can, but nature will take care of itself."