Carol star Cate Blanchett has said that documentary makers can help shine a light on the issue of the 65M refugees displaced around the world.
Blanchett was speaking in Davos to promote her work as a goodwill ambassador for the United Nations High Commissioner For Refugees (UNHCR). She highlighted the likes of Chinese artist Ai Weiwei, who directed doc Human Flow, which told the story of the global crisis.
“There doesn’t seem to be as much time [now] for deep investigative journalism so the role of the documentary has become incredibly powerful and for me there’s been a lot of various stories that have opened the door from the documentary space,” she said.
This comes after Blanchett, who has met refugees in countries including Lebanon, Jordan and her home country, Australia, picked up a Crystal Award at the event for her role in raising awareness of the issue.
However, Blanchett said she didn’t believe that scripted features had the same role in promoting the issue, doubting whether that was the purpose of films such as Hotel Rwanda.
“I don’t see art, whether that is film or visual arts of music as being educative, I see schools as the place for education and home life. Art is more provocation and… I think my role as a storyteller and actor is to start a conversation,” she said.
Blanchett added that high-profile actors and celebrities can use their standing to raise profiles. In my role as an actor of a certain international standing who has achieved certain things, and is called a celebrity, [I do] have a platform and can use that responsibly and generously or you can use it to talk about what you’re wearing,” she added.
Blanchett, who has won two Oscars for her roles in Martin Scorsese’s The Aviator and Woody Allen’s Blue Jasmine, is set to star in this summer’s Ocean’s 8 and is represented by CAA and RGM Artists.