Ocean Warriors: Chasing Thunder Image

Generally, when most people think of organized crime, they immediate associate the term with narcotics, human trafficking, illegal arms sales and the like. A key part of this portfolio, it turns out, is illegal fishing. Using the most environmentally damaging gear and employing unsustainable fishing practices, these poachers rake in huge profits while causing incredible damage to some of the world’s most important and fragile fishing grounds. Into this lawless milieu has stepped Sea Shepherd, a salty group of conservationists who, aboard a small flotilla of ships, have made it their mission to stop these criminal fishing operations down by any means necessary. In the documentary Ocean Warriors: Chasing Thunder the filmmakers take us on thrilling high seas adventure as the crew of two Sea Shepherd ships sail across three oceans and travel over 10,000 miles in a mammoth effort to shut down one of the most notorious of these illegal poaching vessels, the Thunder.

“…depicts all high stakes action and confrontation one might expect from such a documentary as well as surprising moments of humor.”

Sea Shepherd has a famous, some would say infamous, reputation. Created more than forty years ago by American conservationist Paul Watson, Sea Shepherd has its origins in Greenpeace from which Watson acrimonious split as he felt they were too docile in their tactics (which is saying something). Whereas some environmental groups use the rule of law or legislative maneuvers to effect change, the all volunteer crew of Sea Shepherd’s small navy favors direct action. They regularly place their bodies and ships between illegal whalers, harp seal hunters, and poachers of all stripes. And, like modern day eco-pirates, Sea Shepherd has rammed a number of illegal fishing and whaling vessels, sending several to the bottom of the sea. Their exploits, tailor made for television, have not gone unnoticed by the media as Animal Planet created the show Whale Wars to showcase their exploits. Never before, however, had a full fledged movie been made about the group.

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  1. Sunny Lewis says:

    Please inform Joshua Speiser that Paul Watson is Canadian-American born in Toronto, Ontario, not American as stated erroneously in his article.
    Also, see this. Speiser wrote, “Sea Shepherd has its origins in Greenpeace from which Watson acrimonious split”
    Aside from the grammatical errors, just because Watson used to be with Greenpeace, doesn’t mean Sea Shepherd had its origins in Greenpeace.
    Having been a journalist in Vancouver, Canada at the time when Greenpeace started there and Watson was involved in anti-whaling and anti-nuclear Greenpeace actions, I can say with certainty that he helped inspire the Greenpeace actions and then struck out on his own, forming the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society. That is Not the Same as the Sea Shepherd having “its origins” in Greenpeace.

  2. It’s an amazing post in support of all the online people; they
    will get benefit from it I am sure.

  3. LYNN DANAHER says:

    The Friday Harbor Film Festival is very excited to announce our 2018 Andrew V. McLaglen Lifetime Achievement Awardee; Captain Paul Watson; a renowned marine wildlife conservation and environmental activist from Toronto, Canada. He was one of the founding members and directors of Greenpeace. Captain Watson’s early work was featured in the documentary, How to Change the World, an intimate portrait of Greenpeace’s original members, highlighting the challenges of activism. The film was screened at the 2016 Friday Harbor Film Festival. Upon leaving Greenpeace in 1977 Captain Watson founded the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society. Watson has served as Master and Commander on seven different Sea Shepherd ships since 1978 and continues to lead Sea Shepherd campaigns. Alongside his crew he has starred in seven seasons of Animal Planet’s television series Whale Wars.
    Capt. Watson will be honored at our Opening Night Gala at the San Juan Community Theatre, Friday Oct. 26, following by a screening of his new film Chasing the Thunder; a high-seas documentary about the eco-warriors of Sea Shepherd as they engage on an epic 110-day, 10,000-mile chase of the Thunder, a notorious poaching vessel. Wanted by Interpol and banned from fishing in the Antarctic. The Lifetime Achievement Award honors a person who has made outstanding contributions to raising awareness and his or her professional excellence in the field of filmmaking and activism. It is presented in memory of Andrew V. McLaglen, a proficient Award winning Film Director and long-time resident of San Juan Island.

    Plan to attend the 6thannual FRIDAY HARBOR Documentary FILM FESTIVAL; Oct. 26-27-28, 2018.

  4. Kathleen Jorgensen says:

    Never heard of Sea Shepherd. Love it already

  5. Nick says:

    Get this on Netflix ASAP.
    People need to see this

  6. Mariana Louise Redmile says:

    When is this going to be seen in Europe

  7. Captains Peter Hammarstedt and Sid Chakravarty and their crews on the BOB BARKER and SAM SIMON courageously chased the THUNDER for 110 days, the longest pursuit of a poacher in Maritime history. I believe that the passion and imagination of our volunteers gave them the fortitude to endure this pursuit and to carry out the mission to a positive completion. It was an epic campaign and an enormous victory for conservation

  8. Cristina González L. says:

    All of you work very hard to preserve Oceans save and clean. I think the main problem is all those people especially from Asia that demands every day more and more products from the ocean. How to stop illegal fishing if they’re encouraging for the people that don’t care to pay wathever. The black market exist for those that demands those products. Those who ask for fin soup are criminals also, aren’t they aquatinted about how are fins gotten? Greetings to all of you ????????????

  9. Meant no longer of course

    Kudos to Paul Watson and Sea Shepherd for enforcing what governments should have been doing decades ago. There is longer sustainable sea food for the uncontrollable human population and the wildlife. Humans must eat healthier vegan sea food. Hopefully the broken ocean food chain can be mended through international moratoriums so ocean life can survive. The wildlife have no choice to go to grocery stores. More insights at https://www.facebook.com/Ocean-Friends-1442963759271400/

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