They began with civil theatre, for which they were authors and actors, then attention to society and human rights led them to commit themselves to the environment. Marco Cortesi And Mara Moschinia couple even in life, have thus become the "Green Storytellers", activist-authors of "Green Storytellers - Into the Wild" docuseries chronicling a journey between Italy and Europe, within parks, regional reserves, recovery centers and Oasis, to discover the most important WWF projects for the protection of Nature. The third season has just come out and is available on Infinity+ and inside there is an episode filmed in the Cetacean Sanctuary, whose difficult balance between marine mammals and commercial activities was also told by Green & Blue last year.
Precisely on that occasion, in the days spent on the WWF's Blue Panda, the tireless enthusiasm and profound passion with which Mara and Marco talk about nature and document biodiversity conservation projects, trying to communicate that "they really work, that the decline of animal and plant species is not unstoppable". as Mara is keen to point out.
From civil theater to the story of those who save the planet
Their early works give an idea of their motivations: "In the past we have mainly dealt with human rights, we told of the War in the Balkans, the Genocide in Rwanda, the Berlin Wall. - they say - We did it by personally collecting the stories of those who had experienced those events firsthand with courage and determination, convinced that sharing the experience of these witnesses had the power to make us more aware and above all capable of changing this world into a better place".
As for many other artists and writers, Covid has been a moment of reflection, in which to rethink the work. "The pandemic has suspended and canceled any prospect of live entertainment - they say - Faced with an agenda that has become a huge blank sheet overnight, we asked ourselves the same question that has accompanied us on so many occasions: what can we do in our own small way?. It was clear that what was happening was a symptom of a planet whose delicate balance was broken. So we decided to do what we do best: tell stories. This time it would be the stories of those who were trying to restore this lost balance: who defended the seas and oceans, who recycled old clothes to create new ones, who proposed sustainable travel in the company of donkeys, who cleaned up entire beaches from plastic waste".
The first green TV series wanted by the people
As often happens, even great ideas need a bit of luck. "Destiny could not fail to have a hand in it: it was on that occasion that we learned about Infinity Lab, the digital and creative innovation project of Mediaset's Infinity+, which at that time aimed to co-produce creative projects dedicated to the theme of sustainability. - explain the Green Storytellers - This is another decidedly unique aspect of Green Storytellers: in fact, its creation was born from the support of hundreds of people through an unexpectedly successful Crowdfunding Campaign and from the support of Infinity Lab. This did of Green Storytellers is the first true Green TV series born from the bottom up and wanted by the people".
That's how she was born Green Storytellers - Into the Wild, who in the third season meets people and institutions involved in saving endangered animals, safeguarding sea turtles and cetaceans, recovering and treating injured animals or defending forests and natural ecosystems of extraordinary beauty. "We met enormous whales, walked alongside colossal bison, howled in the company of lone wolves, dived among spectacular sharks and went in search of one of the rarest felines in the world - they anticipate - our experiences have become filmed stories".
Commitment to Nature pays off
Behind every episode and image there is a gaze that is never detached, but deeply empathic and deployed: "We firmly believe that taking care of this wonderful planet is not only necessary, but also allows us to rediscover ourselves incredibly happy in doing so. In the midst of so much data that underlines the serious situation in which the environment finds itself, the Green Storytellers underline - however, there are simply exciting success stories. These stories are the main focus of our narrative ".
They are keen to give some examples: "In 2014, in Romania, after 200 years of its complete disappearance in the area, an attempt was made to reintroduce the European bison. Today we were able to film some of the 200 bison that inhabit the country's wonderful forests. In the South-Western Carpathians alone, an estimated 20 new births were recorded in the last year".
Another story cited as emblematic by Mara and Marco is that of Spain, where at the beginning of the 2000s fewer than 100 specimens of Iberian lynx remained in the whole country (a species present only in Spain and Portugal and nowhere else in the world). "After various trials and errors, today 1300 lynxes live free between Spain and Portugal, of these about 280 are females of reproductive age", report the activists-authors.
"These and other success stories are possible thanks to a collective effort between large organizations such as the WWF, the European Community, administrations and local communities - Marco Cortesi reiterates - The projects have made it possible to save species at risk of extinction and above all it has been shown that together with strength and will it is possible to protect the planet. The surprising thing is then to observe the positive fallout on the territory: in parallel with these successes, new activities flourish, new opportunities for well-being, including economic ones, for the locals. Saving Nature makes us happier and richer!"
The tenacity not to give up
"With our cameras and through our story we wanted to celebrate these wonderful success stories capable of giving us the joy and courage not to give up - continues Mara Moschini - as in Romania. For a week we had been looking for the European bison in the wonderful forests of Transylvania accompanied by WWF rangers and by the managers of the reintroduction project. We had followed its tracks like true hounds: the unmistakable smell of the wild, the chewed bark of the trees, the fresh footprints on the damp ground... but being able to seeing the gigantic European bison seemed impossible".
"The day before returning to Italy we tried for the last time: with kilos of equipment on our backs we literally climbed up the side of the mountain to reach one of the wildest areas of the forest, but once again the European bison seemed to be unobtainable. By now disheartened we returned to the jeep to go home. After a few minutes of driving on a dirt road the ranger stopped short: look up, a huge, majestic, beautiful bison was there in the middle of the road in front of us. Our tenacity had been rewarded with almost blatant luck. We stayed in the company of that huge, splendid animal for over half an hour, collecting incredible images while he peacefully grazed grass and wildflowers in a small clearing in the middle of the forest".
"These three years of getting to know the world of sustainability more closely have consolidated our awareness of the priceless value of Nature. - they say - We have never felt so alive and grateful as in front of a pod of dolphins swimming alongside us, as immersed in the silence of a virgin forest waiting for something to move, as in the night listening to the howl of young wolf cubs, as in front of a lynx that looks up and peacefully looks into your eyes. This treasure has no value and it is in the name of this wealth that we will continue to document the courage of those who have chosen to save the planet".
LOOK "Mud" Trailer
The story of the flood in Emilia Romagna
At a time when climate change is manifesting itself with increasingly frequent extreme weather events, Marco Cortesi and Mara Moschini also want to document the disasters that follow. "We are both from Forlì, one of the cities of Emilia Romagna strongly affected by the flood of May 16th: 15 victims, over 50,000 displaced people and damage estimated at over 7 billion euros - they say - Our home has remained unharmed, but faced with a scenario that many have defined as apocalyptic, faced with the pain of thousands of people, faced with a devastated territory, we could not sit idly by. We have begun a work of collecting (simply extraordinary) testimonies: stories of those who have saved, rescued, when you know it's no joke, that those who scream standing on a roof have their hours counted, that the force of a river is capable of overwhelming everything, that those who sleep in a gym with nothing left but the blanket tightened on their chest need a word of comfort more than anything else".
"This new project titled Mud was born to tell the most unforgettable and overwhelming, most dramatic and surprising events of those who didn't give up, of those who fought, of those who rebuilt. The aim is to remember and at the same time continue to concretely help the victims of the flood. It will be a podcast, a theatrical show and a video project, which will lead the viewer into an investigation into the causes that led to such a violent event, into the urgent lesson that the present wants to leave us and thus answer the most pressing question of all: what if it happens again?".