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By Audrey Kemp | LA reporter

March 13, 2023 | 3 min read

A film about the reality of illegal gold mining has gone viral in Brazil after airing during the Oscars this weekend.

DM9, a DDB agency in Sao Paulo, Brazil, used the platform of the 95th Academy Awards ceremony this weekend to educate American audiences about illegal gold mining in the Amazon rainforest.

The two-minute film, called ‘The cost of gold,’ addresses numerous Oscar nominees – including Michelle Yeoh, Cate Blanchett and Brendan Fraser – in an attempt to educate them about the ethical implications of illegal gold mining, from indigenous people’s perspectives.

According to the tribesman in the film, illegal gold miners in Indigenous Yanomami territory are responsible for poisoning the region’s rivers and forests with mercury, killing not only wildlife but human beings that call it home. He closes with a proposition for the nominees: replacing their gilded statues with a painted one made by Brazilian tribes from harmless materials.

The campaign was intentionally tied to a cultural event — the Oscars — in hopes that actors clutching their new gold statues may reflect on where the precious metal comes from.

The film comes as Brazil is currently targeting the illicit gold trade with force and legislation, per Latin American newspaper Insight Crime.

According to DM9, the initiative has since gone viral in Brazil, getting shares from the president, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, the secretary of indigenous people, Sonia Guajajara, and Brazilian celebrities like DJ Alok (30m followers) and Luciano Huck (20m followers).

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Agency: DM9

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