About Pangea Day

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Pangea Day?

Pangea Day is a global event bringing the world together through film. On May 10, 2008, live events in Cairo, Kigali, London, Los Angeles, Mumbai, and Rio de Janeiro will be linked to produce a program of powerful films, live music and visionary speakers. The program will be broadcast live to millions of people worldwide through the internet, television, and mobile phones.

Who started Pangea Day?

Pangea Day was created by award-winning documentary filmmaker Jehane Noujaim in collaboration with the TED Conference after she won the prestigious TED Prize, which granted her a wish to change the world. Together, Jehane, TED, and the Pangea Day team — led by Executive Director Delia Cohen — have created Pangea Day to harness the power of film to enhance empathy, compassion, and peace.

What's the purpose of Pangea Day?

In a world where people are often divided by borders, difference, and conflict, it's easy to lose sight of what we all have in common. Pangea Day seeks to overcome that — to help people see themselves in others — through the power of film.

It will be a chance for people around the globe to see the world through someone else's eyes. We're calling it the world's first global campfire: A day when we share stories made by the world for the world.

Movies alone can't change the world. But the people who watch them can.

What happens on Pangea Day?

On May 10, 2008, a program of short films, live music, and speakers will be screened simultaneously across the globe from live broadcast locations.

At thousands of local viewing parties, hosted by Friends of Pangea Day, people can connect with one another and share the Pangea Day program — and then share their experiences with the world through blogs, shared video, and activism.

What will happen after Pangea Day?

  • Pangea Day organizers will facilitate community-building activities around the world — connecting inspired people with extraordinary activists and organizations
  • Many of the films will be made available through the internet, with space for discussion and social action
  • Dozens of talented filmmakers will make big strides in their careers
  • A Pangea Day documentary will catalyze future activities

Who is Jehane Noujaim?

Jehane Noujaim is an award-winning documentary filmmaker whose films include startup.com and Control Room. In 2006, Jehane was awarded the prestigious TED Prize. As a TED Prize winner, Jehane was asked to make a wish. Her wish was to bring the world together through the power of film. The seeds of Pangea Day were sown.

What was her inspiration for Pangea Day?

When Jehane Noujaim was screening Control Room, people repeatedly asked her what they could do to help heal the world's conflicts. After seeing the amazing work being done by organizations in conflict regions, Noujaim realized that she should somehow harness the inspiration created by the film and connect these people directly to the people making these changes on the ground.

Why does Pangea Day believe in the power of film?

The media has, "A powerful capacity to encourage global awareness thereby promoting cross-cultural understanding, tolerance, and acceptance of ethnic, cultural, religious, and gender differences in communities across the globe," according to an October 2006 report by the Alliance of Civilizations Secretariat — a United Nations initiative.

Television and the internet have become powerful tools. A 2005 Business Week article reported that, "Fifteen- to eighteen-year-olds average nearly 6 1/2 hours a day watching TV, playing video games, and surfing the Net."

As stated in Benjamin Barber's Jihad vs. McWorld, "It is time to recognize that the true tutors of our children are no longer the school teachers and university professors, but the filmmakers, advertising executives and pop culture purveyors."

Pangea Day hopes to become the next tutor.

Are there sponsorship opportunities or other ways to help?

Sponsors and volunteers play a large role in funding and organizing events around the globe for Pangea Day. If you are interested in learning more, please visit the How to Take Part section of the Pangea Day site or contact us.

What is TED?

TED stands for "Technology, Entertainment, Design." It started out in 1984 as a conference bringing together people from those worlds. Since then, its scope has become even broader. This annual conference brings together the world's most fascinating thinkers and doers and challenges them to give the talk of their lives. Talks from the conference are now made available online, for free, and have been watched more than 35 million times worldwide.

What is the TED Prize?

The TED Prize was created as a way of taking the inspiration, ideas, and resources that are generated at TED and using them to make a difference in the world. The prize was introduced in 2005 and recognizes three individuals annually with the potential to change the world. It's unlike any other award, and here's why: Although the winners receive $100,000 — that's the least of what they get — the real prize is that they are granted a wish. A wish to change the world. The TED community then comes together to make that wish come true.