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How Anne Hathaway Is Raising a Zero-Waste Family and Making Film Sets Greener

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Anne Hathaway has shared her passion for the environment a few times in the past, from promoting sustainable fashion on the red carpet to talking accessibility in the zero-waste movement on Instagram. And in a recent interview with InStyle, Hathaway revealed that she's recently taken all that to the next level. The actress opened up about how she's living a zero-waste lifestyle with her family, her new goal of making the film industry more eco-friendly, and more.

For the interview, Hathaway sat down with environmentalist Lauren Singer to discuss the ways they’ve both greened up their lives over the past few years. Hathaway and her husband Adam Shulman welcomed their first baby, Jonathan, in March 2016. That’s when Hathaway began looking into ways to make her lifestyle more sustainable — and a big wake-up call was when she shot the movie The Hustle in the fall of 2017.

“I want to talk about how we can rebound the motion-picture industry because it’s one of the worst polluters on the planet,” Hathaway told Singer. “While working on The Hustle, I noticed disposable coffee cups, plastic water bottles, idling trucks, and food waste. When I finished the film, my family and I went zero waste.” 

Experiencing so much waste while shooting The Hustle combined with having a baby helped Hathaway come to a realization: “It’s about being conscious that the way I choose to live my life is going to have repercussions for somebody else, like our children.”

And she thinks that reducing our consumption and waste is not only good for the planet, but that it feels good on a personal level. “Everybody should give it a try. Because it starts to make sense the more you do it,” Hathaway said. “I mean I grew up in the ’80s, and filling your house with new stuff was a big thing. But now, as a mom, it’s important to me that products I buy don’t end up as something my son trips over in the future and says, ‘What the eff is that? Why is that here?’”

Hathaway and Shulman are currently expecting their second child, so hopefully she will share updates on all the zero-waste ways she is taking care of her new baby once he or she is born. But in the meantime, Hathaway is taking her passion for the Earth to motion pictures. 

“I’m actually putting together an environmental rider,” Hathaway told the magazine. In the movie industry, a rider is a document where an actress can list everything she’d like ready for her in her dressing room and on-set. While most riders are filled with requests for specific drinks or snacks (you know, like gummy bears with all the green ones removed), an environmental rider would make requests for more eco-conscious practices during filming. And Hathaway has a few ideas.

“I see these opportunities where I'm just like, okay, you get everyone a zero-waste kit at the beginning of a film," Hathaway suggested. "And we hire environmental PAs or something to maintain the kits and use reusable coffee cups for all of us, for example, when they go on runs. Now I say if you can remember your keys and phone in the morning, you can remember a reusable coffee cup and water bottle.”

With Hathaway's star power, there’s no doubt that you’ll soon be reading about Hollywood's first zero-waste major motion picture.

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