• Joanna Dodd Massey

Diving Deep: Gen Z Is Poised to Turn Around Climate Change

Updated: Feb 19

A research report issued by the American Psychological Association (APA) in 2018 found that 75 percent of Gen Z respondents said that mass shootings are a major source of stress, while 72 percent of them say that school shootings are a source of stress. In addition, 58 percent of the Gen Z respondents worry about global warming and climate change and 53 percent worry about sexual harassment and assault.


Most generations can point to specific incidents—both bad and good—that shocked them and shaped their worldview. Gen Z’s worldview was formed by watching in fear what happens around them daily.


I heard a story recently—I may have read it in a magazine or maybe it was a friend who told me. A young boy sat outside of the bathroom sobbing as his sister took a very long shower. He was angry and baffled by her lack of attention to and concern for the Earth and our precious resource of water.


It reminded me of a client’s film that I am promoting. Famous ocean explorer and filmmaker Mike deGruy had that same level of frustration toward the end of his life and he set out to document it for the world. Mike didn’t get that chance, so his wife and filmmaking partner Mimi deGruy went into the edit bay after his death to complete Mike’s passion project.

Mike deGruy—ready for an underwater shoot

The result is one of the most compelling bio docs of the year, Diving Deep: The Life and Times of Mike deGruywhich has won several audience awards at recent film festivals. The film is beginning its theatrical run next weekend at Regal theaters in nearly 50 cities across the U.S. It’s a visually stunning movie and anyone who is lucky enough to have the movie in their town won’t want to miss seeing the breathtaking underwater images on the big screen, while being transported by the compelling story of this unforgettable Renaissance man.


Mike deGruy was a Van Gogh-meets-Mark Twain of the oceans. He combined his unbridled enthusiasm for life with visually dazzling underwater cinematography and captivating on-camera storytelling to illuminate the ocean’s magnificent creatures and riveting mysteries. He died tragically while working on a film with director James Cameron. At Mike’s funeral, a friend called him “the human exclamation mark,” and it perfectly describes his infectious personality and childlike zeal for the ocean and her inhabitants.


Gen Z is not the only generation that cares about the environment, but I am certain that they will be the ones to carry the torch and find innovative ways to communicate what’s happening and what we can do about it, just like Mike did.


Here’s a link to the screenings this weekend. If you happen to live in an area where “Diving Deep” is screening, definitely go see it. It’s an uplifting film about one person’s zest for exploring the depths of the ocean and passion for sharing what he knew with the world.