Turner: We don’t want to intellectualize performance art. What we’re doing, we don’t even call it art, we just call it projects. The point is that it hits you, it hits you here, you don’t even have to be able to articulate it. Sure the theory and everything is great. I understand giving it a language, deconstructing it, working out what’s going on. But you don’t need that to experience it.
LaBeouf: The movie world is just as elitist. I get emails from people in the movie world, people telling me, “You gotta maintain mystery.”…but truth will always find its way out there. Sincerity is the new punk rock.
Turner: We don’t add any art shit waffle talk.
Rönkkö: One of the most interesting parts of the show for me was Even Stevens, because that’s not my childhood. I didn’t know the show before meeting Shia, like two years ago. The room went crazy during that movie and just the atmosphere of the room made me so happy and feeling connected to everyone. Sometimes there were a few moments where I was like, “Wait why am I laughing?” This is not even funny, but it is because everyone’s laughing. I was nostalgic because everyone else was nostalgic. I was feeling the feelings with them and through them.
LaBeouf: When the movies started getting shit and they knew that I felt it too, it was the shared secret that we all had…not just because I’m in it…I’m in the same boat as you, I’m a viewer in this and this is hard for me to watch too. In fact, I’m gonna go take a nap ‘cause I hate myself, not ‘cause I’m tired, but because I’m dying right now. And nobody had a problem with that. When I woke up an hour later and watched Transformers 2 they could feel when I sunk in my seat. That’s not a performative thing. That’s me going through some kind of crisis. And I’m not the only one. I remember right before I fell asleep I looked next to me and the guy next to me was falling asleep.
“There is a voice inside of you
That whispers all day long,
‘I feel this is right for me,
I know that this is wrong.’
No teacher, preacher, parent, friend
Or wise man can decide
What’s right for you–just listen to
The voice that speaks inside.”
I am here today because I believe the Breakthrough Initiatives are critically important. To understand the universe you must know about atoms. About the forces that bind them, the contours of space and time. The birth and death of stars, the dance of galaxies, the secrets of black holes. But that is not enough. These ideas cannot explain everything. They can explain the light of stars, but not the lights that shine from Planet Earth. To understand these lights you must know about life, about minds. We believe that life arose spontaneously on Earth so in an infinite universe there must be other occurrences of life. Somewhere in the cosmos, perhaps, intelligent life may be watching these lights of ours aware of what they mean. Or do our lights wander a lifeless cosmos, unseen beacons announcing that here on our rock, the universe discovered its existence? Either way, there is no bigger question. It is time to commit to finding the answer to search for life beyond Earth. The Breakthrough Initiatives are making that commitment. We are life, we are intelligent, we must know.