Lights, Camera, Climate Action: The A-Listers Working to Defend Our Planet


Released earlier this year, Apple’s Extrapolations might just be the most celebrity-saturated television show in history. 

Its galaxy of stars includes – deep breath… – Meryl Streep, Keri Russel, Heather Graham, Diane Lane, Edward Norton, Kit Harington, Matthew Rhys, Daveed Diggs, Tahar Rahim, David Schwimmer, Adarsh Gourav, Ben Harper, Indira Varma, Cara Gee, Gemma Chan, Forest Whitaker, Marion Cotillard, Murray Bartlett and Yara Shahidi – which has led some critics to jest that it’s easier to list who’s not in the show than who is in it. 

And the reason the series was able to attract so many A-list celebrities? It’s about climate change. More significantly, it’s the first blockbuster series that was made to grapple with the topic head-on. 

It was created by Scott Z Burns, the writer of the pandemic-predicting feature film Contagion and producer of Al Gore’s groundbreaking documentary An Inconvenient Truth. The show’s co-creator Dorothy Fortenberry was a lead writer on The Handmaid’s Tale, and the production company, Media Res, was behind Apple’s smash hit Morning Wars

Set between 2037 and 2070, the eight-part, multi-genre, anthology series transports viewers to a future where the chaotic effects of climate change have become embedded into every aspect of our everyday lives. Exploring everything from eco-anxiety to uploading your consciousness to the cloud, the series features interwoven stories about love, work, faith and family in a warming world. Described as, “The Black Mirror for climate change”, the blockbuster series uses the latest science to ‘extrapolate’ what the world is likely to look and feel like if we fail to curb our emissions. 

One could assume the powerhouse cast were drawn to Extrapolations because they wanted to use their stardom and craft to bolster the show’s message and expand its impact – but for many of the stars, their activism, advocacy and influence doesn’t stop after the director yells cut. Here’s how they have been acting for the planet beyond the silver screen.


Hailed as a fashion icon for her boho chic aesthetic, and globally admired for her captivating performances, Sienna Miller has been turning her celebrity power into impact for years. As the global ambassador for the International Medical Corps, she has travelled to countries like the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Haiti and Ethiopia, raising awareness of their ongoing crises and supporting relief efforts. 

Her commitment to sustainability earned her an Environmental Media Association Futures Award in 2007 for her work as an ambassador with Global Cool – a sustainable living platform and campaign also championed by Leonardo DiCaprio, Orlando Bloom and Extrapolations co-star Heather Graham – which aimed to inspire a billion people to take climate action. 

Sienna has been an ambassador for the First Responders campaign, alongside the #IbizaSaysNo to oil drilling campaign, and she also joined 100 signatories, including Bob Geldof and Benedict Cumberbatch, on an open letter in support of the Extinction Rebellion two-week-long disruptions in London. 

The “fashion icon with a conscience” is a true example of how style and sustainability can coexist harmoniously. She has auctioned off her designer wardrobe multiple times in support of Medical Corps and the Wrap Up Against Poverty initiative, and in an effort to draw attention to the environmental destruction caused by fast fashion and the incomprehensible amount of clothing that goes to landfill every week, she put her hand up to become the face of Oxfam’s #SecondHandSeptember campaign.


Celebrated as one of the most talented actors of his generation, Edward Norton knows that the first rule of sustainability is that you talk about sustainability.

Inspired by his father, who was a world-renowned environmental lawyer and conservationist, Edward serves on the board of Enterprise, an organisation that advocates for affordable housing and helps families escape poverty, and is the president of the US board of the Maasai Wilderness Conservation Trust, a sustainable development organisation in East Africa. In 2009 he ran in the New York City Marathon with three Maasai Warriors and helped to raise over $1.2 million for the trust. 

After this run-in with fundraising success, Edward founded and launched CrowdRise, a social-media fundraising website and app that empowers anyone to raise money for a worthy cause which was later acquired by GoFundMe.  

In 2010, Edward became the first Goodwill Ambassador to be appointed by the United Nations Secretary-General. As a Goodwill Ambassador for Biodiversity, Edward works closely with the Secretariat of the UN Convention on Biological Diversity to help spotlight the importance of biodiversity to human wellbeing. 


Meryl Streep has been described as “the best actor of her generation”. Her four-decade career has seen her earn a mind-blowing 21 Academy Award nominations, winning three, and 32 Golden Globe Award nominations, winning eight. 

In Extrapolations, the queen of the screen – who is revered for her versatility – lends her voice, via Artificial Intelligence, to the last humpback whale on earth. And in the real world, she has been lending her voice to worthy causes for decades.  

Meryl has established two English scholarships at the University of Massachusetts Lowell, has funded a screenwriters lab for over 40 female screenwriters, and is a donor and spokesperson for the National Women’s History Museum.

Long before she was playing the president in Don’t Look Up, Meryl was living a life of service with the Natural Resource Defense Council, helping them to launch the Mothers and Others campaign, and advocating for the right to healthy, planet-friendly foods for all. 

At the 84th Academy Awards, she wore a gold Lavin gown made from eco-certified fabric sourced via the Green Carpet Challenge (GCC).


Kit Harrington might be most well known for playing Jon Snow on the HBO fantasy mega-hit Game of Thrones. But as someone who went on to become one of the highest-paid actors on the planet, he knew nothing about what his bank was doing with his money. 

After learning that his savings were funding fossil fuels, Kit teamed up with Richard Curtis – the writer of Love Actually and Four Weddings and a Funeral, and the co-founder of Comic Relief – to launch a commercial as part of the Make My Money Matter campaign.

The advert, in which he appears alongside his real-life partner Rose Leslie, was a cheeky way to highlight the toxic relationship between big banks and fossil fuels. It was broadcast in conjunction with an open letter to the big banks calling on them to stop financing new oil and gas projects.


This leading French actor who starred in Contagion and won an Oscar for playing Edith Piaf in La Vie En Rose has been working for the environment as long as she has been acting.

With a long history of working with Greenpeace, Marion has been an ambassador for their Antarctic expedition, voiced films about protecting the Amazon rainforest and protested for the release of the Arctic 30 by caging herself outside the Louvre. 

After producing the feature documentary Bigger Than Us, which celebrated youth activism, she went on to partner with her longtime friend Cyril Dion (the filmmaker behind Tomorrow, After Tomorrow and Animal) to launch Newtopia a film production company dedicated to creating content that offers new narratives around environmentalism, science, society, health, geopolitics, feminism and gender and imagines a better future for the world.