Monday, Mar. 19, 2012

George Clooney

Many celebrities have pet projects whether environmentalism or politics, but few movie stars have taken as active a role in drawing attention to an issue as George Clooney. In 2006, Clooney and his father, Nick, a journalist, smuggled cameras into Darfur refugee camps to document the humanitarian crisis affecting hundreds of thousands of people. He started a non-profit called Not on Our Watch with Ocean's 11 pals Brad Pitt and Matt Damon and returned to Sudan several times to draw attention to the crisis. Still, he said in a 2010 interview, "I've been honored to be able to lend my celebrity to help wherever I can, especially on behalf of the United Nations, but in the case of Darfur it's been the greatest failure of my life." Ever persistent, on March 16, Clooney participated in a protest in front of the Sudanese embassy in Washington DC to draw attention to ongoing violence in the country and was arrested, along with his 78-year-old father, as a result. The Clooneys were released on bail later in the day and fined $100. "Our job right now is to try to bring attention to it," Clooney said, "and one of those ways was, apparently, to get arrested."