Thursday, September 22, 2016

TGIF FEATURE: Celebrities fight voter apathy

Writer and producer Joss Whedon was able to convince some of his Hollywood friends to be in his video.
JOSS WHEDON has slain vampires, battled super villains, fought off aliens and saved the universe but he may be tackling his biggest villain yet - voter apathy.

To help him on this daunting task, he's assembled his own team of Avengers to appear on the PSA debuted by Save the Day, a video production company dedicated to getting people registered to vote and to the ballot box on November 8. 

“It’s about getting people to vote, because it’s frightening the apathy that people are treating the most crucial election of their lifetimes with,” Whedon told The Hollywood Reporter. 

The creator of Buffy, the Vampire Killer, Firefly and Marvel's Avengers franchise launched the first video Important Wednesday (Sept. 21) featuring 27 celebrities — including Avengers Robert Downey Jr., Scarlett Johansson, Don Cheadle, and Mark Ruffalo, as well as other famous people like Randall Park, Julianne Moore, Keegan-Michael Key, Matt McGorry, James Franco, Jesse Williams, Cobie Smulders, Martin Sheen, and Neil Patrick Harris. He plans on 15 to 25 more before the November elections.

While the first video never mentions Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton or Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump by name, in it, Cheadle stresses the importance of keeping “a racist, abusive coward who could permanently damage the fabric of our society” out of office. And Hamilton’s Leslie Odom Jr. wonders aloud why we’d want to “give nuclear weapons to a man whose signature move is firing things.” 

In short, Whedon’s super PAC makes no secret that they would prefer people vote for Clinton.The prospect of a Trump presidency makes him break out in a sweat, he told BuzzFeed.

“We’re going to anger a lot of people, I’m sure,” he continued.

Save the Day makes its mandate clear with its position statement, posted in bold so it’s the first thing you absorb when you visit the site. “We are a short-form production company dedicated to the idea that voting is a necessary and heroic act,” it reads. “That every voice in this wonderfully diverse nation should, and must, be heard. That the only thing that can save democracy is the act that defines it. We are committed to fighting the apathy, cynicism, and honest confusion that keeps citizens from using their vote. And to reminding an increasingly out-of-touch and compromised set of representatives that they are answerable to the people they were hired to serve.”

Whedon's effort is similar to the PSA produced by Asian Americans Advancing Justice targeting the AAPI community with Asian;American celebrities making the same appeal.

This PSA was made possible in partnership with Asian Americans Advancing Justice, Imprenta Communications Group, The Great Company, and Asian Pacific American Leadership Foundation.

Have questions or need help voting? Call 1-888-API-VOTE (1-888-274-8683). Bilingual assistance is available in English, Mandarin, Cantonese, Korean, Vietnamese, and Tagalog.
#VoiceYourVote: This year, be sure to uplift #AAPIVoices and make your voice heard by registering to vote and voting in the elections