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Ethan Hawke, 'The Purge' Actor, Talks Environmental Activism

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This film image released by Universal Pictures shows Ethan Hawke in a scene from "The Purge." (AP Photo/Universal Pictures, Daniel Mcfadden) | AP

From Mother Nature Network's Michael d'Estries:

In the new hit horror flick "The Purge," it's the year 2022 and the United States has achieved record lows for both unemployment and crime. Unfortunately, such an achievement comes with a price. Each year for 12 hours, the government suspends emergency services and allows citizens to vent their negative emotions — with all crimes, including murder, deemed legal during that period.

Ethan Hawke, who stars in the movie as a father attempting to protect his family from a group of "purgers," was recently asked in an interview with Grantland what illegal activities he might attempt if there were no consequences.

"If I was in a situation where I could get away with anything terrible that I wanted to get away with? Well, I have a secret fantasy of being an environmental terrorist — like when I see these oil spills and all these dead fish and the chopping down of forests," he says. "I’d love to slip just a little dynamite in somewhere. That would be where my inner demon lurks."

Hawke's interest in environmental issues has shown itself in a variety of ways over the years — from helping to help get New York City's High Line Park off the ground to participating in a campaign to keep hydraulic fracking out of New York. And then there's his mother, a committed vegetarian and animal activist.

"She has a joke that she always says at dinner conversations, which is, ‘Are you vegetarian yet?’, because she believes that by the time my children are grown up, basically everybody will be one,” he told The Independent in 2007.

Naturally, a film like "The Purge" is going to elicit questions of consequence-free crime — but remember, it's just silly banter. Ethan Hawke is not going to go rogue and start freeing whales from Sea World (although such a headline would be awesome.)

"OK, good," Hawke said after Grantland quipped that the title of their interview would be 'Ethan Hawke, Eco-Terrorist'. "Yeah, 'Ethan Hawke Wages War on Oil.' Next thing you know, I’ll mysteriously die in a car accident."

Check out the full article here. A trailer for "The Purge" is below.

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