ISR – Individual Social Responsibility is the term that Hollywood actor Mark Ruffalo inspires. Ruffalo, who received critical acclaim for his performance as Dr. Bruce Banner and his alter ego, the Hulk, is using his stardom to reach out to millions of his fans to talk about causes he passionately supports. On June 25, Ruffalo announced the ‘Win a Trip to The Avengers 2 Set and Hang out with Mark Ruffalo’ promotion, which is aimed at creating awareness about Water Defense, an organization the star-activist founded to rally for the protection of public water supply from danger of contamination by the booming hydro-fracking industry in the US.
The promotion is on till July 15 and has become a phenomenon by itself on Twitter #AvengersSetWithMark, a sign of the immense support and goodwill he has earned since he took up the cause. Ruffalo’s last film, The Avengers, became the third-highest-grossing film in the US and generated $1 billion in ticket sales.
‘I’m a husband, father, actor, director, and a climate change advocate with an eye on a better, brighter, cleaner, more hopeful future for all of us’ is Mark Ruffalo’s introduction of his Twitter account that commands a loyal following of 887k. And he uses this platform along with TV interviews, rallies, live online chats, visits to educational institutions, and collaboration with his film-makers of his own films to talk about issues closest to his heart. Hydraulic fracturing, hydrofracking, or fracking is a method of natural gas drilling that involves pumping millions of gallons of water, sand, and hundreds of toxic chemicals thousands of feet underground to release tiny pockets of gas by breaking up the rock where the gas is trapped.
And Ruffalo has a direct connect with the water safety issue related to fracking as he is living with his wife and children on a converted dairy farm beside the Delaware river in Callicoon, upstate New York. Their home, happens to sit atop the Marcellus shale bed, which is believed to be one of the world’s richest, and is being eyed hungrily by oil and gas companies.
A video by Water Defense on Hydro-Fracking:
Having become a credible face for public water safety, people have been reaching out to this real life hero asking for his help in spreading awareness about polluted tap water in their homes as a result of fracking. The actor first started appearing as a talking head on the topic on cable news and just kept going!
Mark’s commitment to a cleaner, more hopeful future has also translated into yet another solution-action-awareness oriented organization called The Solutions Project. The organization’s mission statement promises to use the powerful combination of science + business + culture to accelerate the transition to 100% clean, renewable energy. And if that wasn’t enough, Mark’s activism has also included fighting for gay marriage to be legalized and standing up against those who would outlaw abortion. The actor fearlessly takes up issues that no ‘level headed’ celebrity of his stature will touch with a ten foot pole.
Life has dealt severe blows on this do-gooder actor but he has managed to march on undeterred. Mark has survived brain tumour, a dip in his film career and the tragic death of his younger brother, a 39-year-old Beverly Hills hairstylist, who was murdered at his home. Mark has never been less determined to use the Hollywood megaphone to fight for all the causes he strongly believes in. And it is quite another thing to see his Twitter or tumbler page belting out updates on his blockbuster Hollywood film shoots on the one hand, mixed with shout outs to his ever-growing fan base about Climate Change, women’s rights, renewable energy and fundraisers for Water Defense.
This ‘Incredible’ Hulk would surely make Spiderman’s Uncle very proud. Because he knows only too well that ‘With great power comes great responsibility’. And he chooses to use it to fight for a better, brighter, cleaner, more hopeful future. Closer home, it would be nice to see our own home-grown Ra One and Krrish, imbibe Mark’s passion for clean water and perhaps translate it into a nationwide campaign to clean the River Ganga!
Support Water Defence #AvengersSetWithMark Promotion Video: