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Local Lawyer's Story Leads To 'Dark Waters'

Mark Ruffalo, who produced and stars in 'Dark Waters,' at a screening of the film on Wednesday, Nov. 6, 2019, in West Hollywood.
Mark Ruffalo, who produced and stars in 'Dark Waters,' at a screening of the film on Wednesday, Nov. 6, 2019, in West Hollywood.

Actor Mark Ruffalo enjoyed his time in the Cincinnati area where he shot his starring role in the upcoming film Dark Waters.

In the film, Ruffalo plays Cincinnati attorney Robert Bilott, who waged a 20-year legal battle against the DuPont Company, and in the process, uncovered some of the worst environmental contamination cases in modern history.

Bilott, who practices at Taft Stettinius & Hollister, worked closely with filmmakers during the production of Dark Waters. In fact, he tells Cincinnati Edition that it was a direct call to him from Mark Ruffalo that got the project started.

Now, Bilott is also telling the story in the new book, Exposure: Poisoned Water, Corporate Greed, and One Lawyer's 20-Year Battle Against DuPont

Bilott joins Cincinnati Edition to talk about the case that inspired the movie and his book; reads excerpts; and talks about what it is like being portrayed on screen by a Hollywood star.

In response, DuPont issued the following statement to Cincinnati Edition Thursday afternoon.

"Safety, health and protecting the planet are core values at DuPont. We are – and have always been – committed to upholding the highest standards for the wellbeing of our employees, our customers and the communities in which we operate. As a science-based company, DuPont is innovating in all facets of our business – in our policies and protocols as well as our products. Nothing is more important than the safety of our employees and the communities in which we operate.

"Although DuPont does not make the chemicals in question, we have announced a series of commitments around our limited use of PFAS, and are leading industry in supporting federal legislation and science-based regulatory efforts to address these chemicals. This includes eliminating the use of all PFAS-based firefighting foams from our facilities and granting royalty-free licenses to those seeking to use innovative PFAS remediation technologies.  

"DuPont is in the business of creating essential innovations the world needs today. Hollywood is in the business of telling stories. While seeking to thrill and entertain, these stories often stretch facts. Unfortunately, this movie claims to be 'inspired' by real events and appears to grossly misrepresent things that happened years ago, including our history, our values and science. The film's previews depict wholly imagined events. Claims that our company tried to hide conclusive scientific findings are inaccurate. We have always – and will continue to – work with those in the scientific, not-for-profit and policy communities who demonstrate a serious and sincere desire to improve our health, our communities and our planet."

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