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Acclaimed Filmmaker Randy Olson to Screen “Sizzle” at New College, March 17

From New College News:

Sarasota, FL, March 4, 2009 — New College of Florida invites you to “feel the heat” on March 17, when the College welcomes Harvard-trained marine biologist-turned-filmmaker Randy Olson to campus for a special discussion and showing of his latest movie, Sizzle: A Global Warming Comedy. The event, which will be held at New College’s Harry Sudakoff Center starting at 7:00 pm., is open to the public. Reservations are recommended. Tickets are $5 for the general public; free for New College faculty, students and staff with their New College ID.

Noted for his satirically critical examination of hot button scientific and environmental issues, Olson, who received his Ph.D. from Harvard in 1984 and gave up a tenured professorship at the University of New Hampshire to attend USC and become a filmmaker, is often as critical of scientists poor communications’ skills as he is of the zealous critics of evolution and global warming who regularly make their way into the news. His film Flock of Dodos: The Evolution-Intelligent Design Circus premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival in 2006 and received critical acclaim. Eventually, it was picked up by Showtime and is currently available on DVD around the world.

Olson’s most recent film, Sizzle, tackles the controversy over global warming. It premiered in July 2008 and is currently being shown at film festivals and on college campuses around the country. Its airing at New College is the only current screening in Florida.

During his visit to New College, Olson will discuss the making of Sizzle, as well as his belief that scientists and researchers must do a better job of communicating with the general public. According to Olson, the scientific community’s inability to clearly present their arguments to the public often results in too much time being wasted responding to PR campaigns waged by fringe groups and too little time actually being spent seeking solutions to critical issues facing our planet.

Olson is being brought to Sarasota by Mote Marine Laboratory, as the final guest speaker in their annual Special Lecture Series, sponsored by Robert and Jill Williams. Olson’s lecture at Mote Marine will take place at 7:30 p.m. on Monday, March 16, in Mote’s Immersion Cinema, 1600 Ken Thompson Parkway, Sarasota. That lecture, on his new book Don’t Be Such a Scientist: Talking Substance in an Age of Style, is open to the public. Mote also will show Olson’s award-winning film, Flock of Dodos: The Evolution-Intelligent Design Circus, in the Immersion Cinema throughout the weekend of March 14-15. Showings of Flock of Dodos will be free for Mote Aquarium visitors with their paid admission. For lecture seating reservations at Mote or more information, please visit www.mote.org/lecture or call 941-388-4441, ext. 369.

For reservations to hear Randy Olson’s talk at New College and to view his new film Sizzle on March 17, please contact New College Special Events Coordinator Greg Hite at (941) 487-4155 or email events@ncf.edu. For media inquiries, please contact either Aimee Chouinard at New College of Florida (941-487-4152) or Nadine Slimak at Mote Marine (941-388-4441, ext. 417).