At a time when more and more people and productions are supporting environmental causes and charities, the cast, filmmakers and crew of THE INCREDIBLE HULK decided that it was time to take their beliefs one step further and to apply them to their own industry.
Gale Anne Hurd explains: “When we first started having meetings back in Los Angeles about THE INCREDIBLE HULK, it brought to mind that we were dealing with the biggest, most well-known green character on the planet. Edward Norton has been a committed environmentalist for a long time, and when you have a green character and people with an environmental consciousness, the opportunity is there to put the two together.”
The production team embraced the idea. Much of the cast and crew already employed green practices at home, so bringing the same environmental consciousness to work was a logical next step. THE INCREDIBLE HULK adopted a vigorous program to reduce the film’s impact on the environment. The goal was to be as green as possible, and every department participated to reduce its waste and energy consumption—the production’s carbon footprint.
By its very nature, the transportation department on a film can be a huge polluter. One of the first practices instituted on the production was, wherever possible, to use hybrid and fuel-efficient vehicles. Transport found a source of ultra-low sulfur diesel for all diesel vehicles and generators and instituted a strict “no idling” policy on all lots and locations.
The construction department chose to forego the use of lauan, an affordable and readily available tropical hardwood that is, unfortunately, not harvested in a sustainable manner. In its place, a sustainably harvested, locally sourced yellow pine was used. Whenever possible, the pine was recycled, repurposed or reclaimed and offered for use by agencies such as Habitat for Humanity. The scenic art department crew members used zero- or low-VOC paints and took turns taking paint cans to the hazardous waste drop-off center on their weekends off work.
The craft and catering departments sourced locally grown produce and eliminated plastic grocery bags with the use of cloth shopping bags. On-set food was served in biodegradable rather than Styrofoam containers, and china and silverware were used for lunch, as were biodegradable utensils for those on the go. As a start-of-production gift to reduce plastic water bottles and take-out hot beverage containers, Hurd gave everyone on the crew a stainless steel mug. Additionally, a contractor was hired to provide and remove bins at every location and set, thereby recycling paper, plastic, glass and cans.
Other green activities and efforts instituted throughout production included:
• Paperless distribution or use of recycled paper wherever possible
• Use of rechargeable batteries by the sound department
• Implementation of biodegradable soaps and cleaners in trailers and production offices
• Installation of compost and green bins in the production office kitchen, as well as in the lunch tents and craft trucks
Sums up Hurd, “As filmmakers, I think it’s our responsibility to be leaders and to be able to find new ways of making movies a much more environmentally conscious enterprise. The cast and crew of THE INCREDIBLE HULK chose to take the mission of the greening of our film seriously; it’s time for this kind of initiative to become the norm, not the exception, in film and television production.”
Production wrapped, THE INCREDIBLE HULK team said goodbye to 3:30 a.m. mountain shots, being bruised up by men in green suits, the noise that was the constant propane bomb poppers, and, of course, The Hulkinator.
Bruce Banner himself, Edward Norton, summarizes why this tortured man and his powerful alter ego have, for so many decades, remained a fascination to generations of fans, especially those who hold on to Bill Bixby’s legacy: “The reason you tuned in week after week to watch this guy’s lonely existence is that you wanted him to find the cure. You wanted him to get to come in from the cold and be a real person again—not this haunted, hunted fugitive. He lost everything. There’s an aspect of Hulk that is a little sadder, a little more tragic.”
Fittingly, The Hulk’s creator has our parting words. Lee concludes: “The thing I’m happiest about is that he has lasted this long, thanks to so many brilliant writers and artists who did that strip after Jack and I went on to other projects. Now it’s going to be a major motion picture, which I know will be great. I wonder how many Hulk sequels there’ll be after it. I’d better stay in good with the guys at Marvel so I’ll get my cameos.”
Universal Pictures and Marvel Entertainment Present A Marvel Studios Production and A Valhalla Motion Pictures Production: Edward Norton in THE INCREDIBLE HULK, starring Liv Tyler, Tim Roth, Tim Blake Nelson, Ty Burrell and William Hurt. Casting is by Laray Mayfield; music is by Craig Armstrong. The music supervisor is Dave Jordan; the visual effects supervisor is Kurt Williams. THE INCREDIBLE HULK’s editors are John Wright, ACE, Rick Shaine, ACE and Vincent Tabaillon. The action-thriller’s production designer is Kirk M. Petruccelli; the director of photography is Peter Menzies, Jr., ACS. Executive producers for the film are Stan Lee, David Maisel, Jim Van Wyck. The film is produced by Avi Arad, Gale Anne Hurd, Kevin Feige. The screen story and screenplay are by Zak Penn. THE INCREDIBLE HULK is directed by Louis Leterrier. www.incrediblehulk.com ©2008 Universal Studios.