Martin Sheen has come aboard the documentary The Map to Paradise, as an executive producer. The film, which recently debuted at the Santa Barbara International Film Festival, is directed by Danielle Ryan and James Sherwood and outlines the perils threatening Earth’s oceans while offering solutions that are beginning to work around the world.  

Sheen, who earned a degree in oceanography from National University of Ireland in Galway, Ireland, has made saving the oceans his top cause. He was recognized in 2017 for his decades of involvement with Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, a non-profit marine conservation organization that is highlighted in the film. 

The Map to Paradise is a celebration of what individual people have accomplished,” Sheen said in lending his name to the film. “The people in this film saw a need and responded to it personally. Each intended to have an effect on their immediate community but became a source of inspiration for other people in their village, then their country and then other countries on other continents as well. If we don’t take the environment personally, then it becomes impersonal which is ineffective. That’s the key message of this film.

“What is so rewarding about the film is that it is a great source of optimism and inspiration,” he added. “Those committed will be inspired to continue; and those who aren’t yet will become inspired. The destruction of the environment affects everyone on the planet and everyone on the planet has a responsibility to make a contribution to their own survival.”

“We are extremely honored to have Martin Sheen advocate our film,” Ryan and Sherwood said in a statement. “His involvement as an executive producer will heighten the awareness of the overall cause for which this film was made, and that will help accomplish our goal of conservation and protection of our fragile seas. Hopefully, Martin’s support will inspire more actors to do the same, helping to grow the environmental film movement and reshape the cultural narrative so mainstream audiences gain a bigger appetite for films about creating a better world.”  

Written and produced by Ryan and directed by Ryan and Sherwood, The Map to Paradise features Prince Albert II of Monaco, President Tommy Remengesau of Palau, Enric Sala (National Geographic explorer) and Captain Paul Shepherd (Sea Shepherd Conservation Society).