Monday, February 18, 2013

Social Action Campaign Accompanies Release of "No"

Participant Media's Social Action Campaign for Oscar®-Nominated Chilean Film No, Focuses on the Importance of Freedom of Expression

No Mas— Provides a Platform for Individuals to Speak up for Those Who Can't

LOS ANGELES--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Inspired by Participant Media's and Sony Pictures Classics' No, the Chilean Academy Award® nominee for Best Foreign Language Film opening in the U.S. on February 15th, Participant in collaboration with Freedom House, Amnesty International, and Reporters Without Borders has designed a Social Action campaign focused on the importance of freedom of political expression. "No Mas" – provides a platform for individuals to speak up for others who are living in nations that silence any opposition to the establishment.

Chad Boettcher, Participant's Executive Vice President of Social Action & Advocacy, said, "As the film shows how, through an ingenious advertising campaign in 1988 the Chilean public were persuaded to just say No to Pinochet's despotic reign, our Social Action campaign for No gives those of us who enjoy freedom of expression the creative digital tools to protest the injustices happening in the world today on behalf of those without that freedom. By joining forces with three of the leading organizations working in this space, we have been able to identify some key opportunities to make a difference."

Visitors are encouraged to exercise their right to free speech--a right too often taken for granted and not enjoyed by everyone—by creating a personalized “No Mas” badge. Then they are urged to sign pledges of support for those in oppressive countries who have been silenced, including a Bahraini human rights activist who was imprisoned for Tweeting, and a young Cuban who’s been incarcerated for listening to hip hop music with political lyrics.

In addition, visitors will be able to view a short video that illustrates how historically those who have been oppressed have said "No Mas. " This will serve as a topic of discussion on "No Mas Mondays" when every week in February, Takepart is hosting live Twitter chats where @TakePart will be talking with talent and experts about the film, the historic 1988 No campaign and the importance of freedom of political expression today. Join on February 4th for a live chat with Ivan Sigal, the executive director of Global Voices, a non-profit online global citizens’ media initiative.

Daniel Calingaert, Executive Vice President of Freedom House, said, “The movie “NO” is a wonderful illustration of the collective power of citizens’ voices and should inspire us all to raise ours for the many people in this world who face harassment, imprisonment, torture and even death when they stand up for their rights. Freedom House is pleased to join with Participant Media and our sister human rights organizations to lend our collective voice to ensure that others are not silenced.”

Sunjeev Bery, Advocacy Director for the Middle East and North Africa, Amnesty International USA added, “Through this campaign, Americans can stand up for freedom in Bahrain, where the government is imprisoning nonviolent protestors like Nabeel Rajab. Citizens are being imprisoned by the Bahraini government simply for expressing themselves or criticizing the monarchy.”

Said Christophe Deloire, Executive Director, Reporters Sans Frontieres-Reporters Without Borders International, "At Reporters Without Borders, we are particularly proud to work with Participant Media on the No Mas campaign and bring attention to the journalists, bloggers and all the other news providers who are fighting for the freedom to inform and to be informed.

About No
No, Academy Award® nominee for Best Foreign Language Film, was directed by Pablo Larrain, written by Pedro Peirano and stars Gael Garcia Bernal, Alfredo Castro, Antónia Zegers, Luis Dnecco, Marcial Tafle, Nastor Cantillana, Jaime Vadell and Pascal Montero.

In 1988, Chilean military dictator Augusto Pinochet, due to international pressure, is forced to call a plebiscite on his presidency. The country will vote YES or NO to Pinochet extending his rule for another eight years. Opposition leaders for the NO persuade a brash young advertising executive, Rene Saavedra (Garcia Bernal), to spearhead their campaign. Against all odds, with scant resources and under scrutiny by the despot’s minions, Saavedra and his team devise an audacious plan to win the election and set Chile free.

About Participant Media
Participant Media ( is an entertainment company that focuses on documentary and non-documentary feature films, television, publishing and digital content about the real issues that shape our lives. For each of its projects, Participant creates social action and advocacy programs to transform the impact of the media experience into individual and community action. Participant’s online Social Action Network is TakePart ( Founded by Jeff Skoll in 2004, Jim Berk serves as CEO. Participant's films include The Kite Runner, Charlie Wilson's War, An Inconvenient Truth, Good Night, and Good Luck, The Visitor, Food, Inc., The Cove, The Crazies, Countdown to Zero, Waiting for "Superman,” Fair Game, PAGE ONE: Inside The New York Times, The Help, Contagion, The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, Lincoln, Promised Land and No.

About Sony Pictures Classics
Michael Barker and Tom Bernard serve as co-presidents of Sony Pictures Classics—an autonomous division of Sony Pictures Entertainment they founded with Marcie Bloom in January 1992, which distributes, produces, and acquires independent films from around the world.

Barker and Bernard have released prestigious films that have won 29 Academy Awards® (25 of those at Sony Pictures Classics) and have garnered 135 Academy Award® nominations (109 at Sony Pictures Classics) including Best Picture nominations for Amour, Midnight In Paris, An Education, Capote, Howards End and Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon.

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