In 2011 Joan Embery served as Co-Producer on the film Turtle Reef by Soames Summerhays. Her job was to help present the story in a way that would connect with audiences. Afterwards she was interviewed about her role in the project.
Q: Joan, you are forever in front of the camera. How is it to be working behind the scenes on Turtle Reef 3D? What was that like?
From the Turtle Reef website: "Turtle Reef is an emotionally inspiring story that explores the intimacies of the relationships between creatures on a coral reef in Hawaii during a 24-hour period. The film’s narrative is based upon past and present research by reef scientists who are gradually unlocking the secret lives of coral reef denizens. As the story of Turtle Reef unfolds we come to realize how closely their lives, their struggles and their partnerships parallel our own.
Joan Embery is nationally famous for her television appearances with live animals, her comments and perspectives on conservation in the media, and her public speaking engagements with her Animal Ambassadors to the general public. The Embery Institute for Wildlife Conservation is dedicated to supporting conservation initiatives worldwide. She and her husband Duane Pillsbury run a ranch where 35 of their exotic Animal Ambassadors are cared for in Lakeside, California.
Q: Joan, how does your work – what you do - support conservation?
Joan Embery: My goal is to connect people to wild life and wild places and build a desire to conserve and protect them. My Animal Ambassadors are one of the ways I can highlight the wonders of nature and inspire people to conserve nature.
Q: You are primarily known for your conservation work in San Diego and around the country on land. Is this your first incursion into a marine conservation project, and how did that come about?
Joan Embery: I’m definitely a water person. I grew up on the coast – spent a lot of time as a kid on the ocean and so I’ve always been attracted to marine life. Working with Soames gave me an opportunity to explore it further and become immersed in this marine story. For the first time, for me, I had an opportunity to return to the same locations on a daily basis and get to know where the creatures hung out – and learn how their day was spent, how they interact – and to become part of their world. Who would have thought that fish have a program for the day? There’s a lot going on down there.
Q: What was your role in the production of Turtle Reef 3D – and why was it so important?
Joan Embery: I’ve spent my life interpreting wildlife for the general public. I think I have a good handle on what people know and what interests them – and that is not always obvious. Working with Soames and his team I’m like another person sitting in the audience – I can ask the same questions that they’d ask. I add another important perspective.
Read the full article online at turtlereef3d.com.
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