First 'Deepwater Horizon' Movie Trailer Released

The debate already has begun about whether the movie cynically exploits the families of the workers who died or portrays them and the catastrophe honestly.

Six years after an April 20, 2010, well blowout and fire killed 11 workers, destroyed the Deepwater Horizon drilling platform, and triggered a major oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, the first trailer for a movie named "Deepwater Horizon" about the disaster has been released.

The debate already has begun about whether the movie -- directed by Peter Berg and featuring Mark Wahlberg, Kurt Russell, and John Malkovich among the cast – cynically exploits the families of the workers who died or portrays them and the catastrophe honestly.

Beyond the heavy loss of lives, the blowout caused an oil spill that lasted 87 days, resulted in a reorganization of the Department of the Interior's offshore apparatus and the creation of the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) in October 2011, and cost companies involved in the drilling billions of dollars. BP plc announced in July 2015 that it had agreed to settle federal and state claims for $18.7 billion and said at that time that its cumulative pre-tax charge associated with the incident and spill was around $53.8 billion by that time, while a Transocean Ltd. subsidiary agreed to plead guilty to one misdemeanor violation of the Clean Water Act for negligent discharge of oil into the Gulf of Mexico and pay $1.4 billion in fines, recoveries, and penalties to resolve the federal criminal investigation of Transocean and settle its claims for civil penalties.

Meanwhile, on March 22, the Justice Department asked U.S. District Judge Carl Barbier of New Orleans to approve the settlement resolving the federal and state governments' civil claims against BP arising from blowout and oil spill. The proposed settlement "would resolve the governments' civil claims under the Clean Water Act and natural resources damage claims under the Oil Pollution Act and would also allow for implementation of a related settlement of economic damage claims of the Gulf states and local governments. Taken together this global resolution of civil claims is worth more than $20 billion," Assistant Attorney General John C. Cruden of the Justice Department's Environment and Natural Resources Division said in a statement. "Since announcing the proposed settlement the Department of Justice, along with the five Gulf States and the Departments of Interior, Commerce and Agriculture as well as the Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Coast Guard have conducted eight public hearings and sought public comment on all aspects of the consent decree. We are now providing all of the 28,000 comments we received to the court along with our evaluation as to why the final consent decree is fair, reasonable and in the public interest."

He said if the judge approves the consent decree, BP will pay a Clean Water Act penalty of $5.5 billion plus interest, $8.1 billion in natural resource damages, up to an additional $700 million to address injuries to natural resources that are currently unknown, and $600 million for other claims.

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