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Gore's Global Warming Documentary Generates Huge Buzz

LOS ANGELES, California, (ENS) - Hollywood put out a green welcome mat Tuesday for former Vice President Al Gore and his film about global warming, "An Inconvenient Truth."

Larry David, David Duchovny, Sharon Stone, and Garry Shandling were among the actors and activists who entered the theatre on a green carpet instead of the usual red one.

The documentary premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in January and will be in theatres in New York and Los Angeles on May 24. Plans are to show it in every major city across the country.

In the film, director Davis Guggenheim melds the science of global warming with Al Gore's personal history and lifelong commitment to reversing the effects of global climate change.

A longtime advocate for the environment, Gore presents a wide array of facts and information in the film, which is intended as a rallying cry to protect the planet. "It is now clear that we face a deepening global climate crisis that requires us to act boldly, quickly, and wisely," said Gore. "Al Gore strips his presentations of politics, laying out the facts for the audience to draw their own conclusions in a charming, funny and engaging style, and by the end has everyone on the edge of their seats, gripped by his haunting message," said Guggenheim.

"Hollywood Reporter" writer Kirk Honeycutt says the film successfully accomplishes what he sees as its two goals - "to bring to a much larger audience...Al Gore's fascinating multimedia presentation of the facts and issues arising from the phenomenon of global climate change" and "to re-introduce to the American public a man we thought we knew but clearly did not."

Critics who dismiss the idea of global warming are mounting their own publicity campaigns to denigrate the film.

Today, at the National Press Club, the Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI) unveiled its national global warming ad campaign by showing two 60 second television spots calling global warming "alarmism."

One of the ads claims the public has received only one side of the glacial melting issue.

The ads will air in a dozen cities around the country beginning Thursday.

"The campaign to limit carbon dioxide emissions is the single most important regulatory issue today," says Marlo Lewis, a CEI senior fellow in environmental policy. "It is nothing short of an attempt to suppress energy use, which in turn would be economically devastating-all to avert an alleged catastrophe whose scientific basis is dubious."

CEI, a public policy group "dedicated to the principles of free enterprise and limited government," says claims of "looming climate disaster due to energy use are unfounded."

Another opponent, the National Center for Policy Analysis, says it has published a a new study that finds "the most inconvenient truth is that the science behind these claims is fatally flawed."

"The complexity of the climate and the limitations of data and computer models mean all projections of future climate change are unreliable at best," said David Legates, author of the study and the director of the University of Delaware's Center for Climatic Research. "Science does not support claims of drastic increases in global temperatures, nor claims of human influence on weather events or extinctions." The study claims that "climate models used as the basis for global warming claims routinely miss key climate factors, which results in false predictions of catastrophe."

But government scientists said Tuesday that the lower 48 states experienced the warmest April ever, based on records dating back to 1895.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's National Climatic Data Center in Asheville, North Carolina reported that drier than average conditions and severe drought that persisted across large portions of the southern and southwestern United States.

April was 4.5 degrees F (2.5 degrees C) above the 20th century average, the NOAA scientists said. Texas and Oklahoma had their warmest April on record, while New Mexico, Kansas, Arkansas, Missouri and Tennessee recorded their second warmest. Twelve other states recorded one of their top five warmest Aprils on record. None of the 48 contiguous states was cooler than average.

Globally, NOAA scientists said this was the seventh warmest April since 1880, when reliable instrumental recordkeeping began. The warmest April was in 1998 with an anomaly of 1.26 degrees F (0.70 degrees C) above the mean.

The climate facts will be up for debate at The Town Hall in New York City next Thursday, May 25.

Gore will take the stage with producers of "An Inconvenient Truth," Lawrence Bender and Laurie David, and NASA climate scientist Dr. James Hansen to participate in a panel discussion presented by "WIRED Magazine."

Gore will open the evening by framing the issues explored in "An Inconvenient Truth." WIRED contributor John Hockenberry will then moderate a solutions-focused conversation between Gore, Bender, David, and Hansen on what the public can do to act now in the fight against global warming.

Paramount's Classics has committed five percent of their domestic theatrical gross for their film, "An Inconvenient Truth," with a minimum guarantee of $500,000 to be donated to a new bipartisan climate effort, Alliance for Climate Protection. The deal was announced May 10 by Gore, Jeff Skoll, CEO of Participant Productions and John Lesher, president Paramount's Classics, the specialty film division of Paramount Pictures.

This unprecedented donation runs the entire length of the film's domestic release.

"An Inconvenient Truth," produced by Participant Productions which had previously pledged to contribute their profits to the Alliance was acquired by Paramount Classics at the 2006 Sundance Film Festival.

"I hope that "An Inconvenient Truth" will be an action movie in the truest sense of the phrase - that the film will motivate people to take action to address the climate crisis," said Gore. "In addition, the more tickets that are sold, the more funds will be raised giving the Alliance the opportunity to educate and galvanize millions more around this issue and inspire them to be a part of the solution."

Alliance for Climate Protection will use the money for a national education and organizing campaign to mobilize the public on global warming.

The primary goals of the campaign are to motivate a critical mass of the public and influential constituencies to demand action to cut U.S. emissions and to make solving global warming a national political imperative.

The group also seeks to implement solutions to global warming that cap and cut U.S. global warming pollution emissions in the near term, and develop a political consensus for further international agreements that include full participation by developing economies in achieving emission reduction targets.

Ted Roosevelt IV and Larry Schreiber are serving as the board co-chairs on the group.

More information on Alliance for Climate Protection is available at allianceforclimateprotection.org. More information on "An Inconvenient Truth," is available at climatecrisis.org.

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