Jacques-Yves Cousteau was the first to uncover the underwater world. Before Calypso's famous adventures, that world was completely unknown to the public.
Captain Cousteau's fascination with film began when he was very young. When he began to make films, he was certainly better prepared than most other people. Shooting films was his favourite activity. Some sailors like to keep a journal while they are on board. He preferred to take notes with images. His desire to share his images with the vast public and to make them care about the marine world was very important to him. Beginning in the 1940's, when the Captain first began making films, a lot of work has gone into developing cameras, filters, lenses and lighting for underwater filming.
Jacques Yves Cousteau among films he shoot during all his expeditions Cousteau films have received international recognition. The Silent World (1956), produced by the Captain with Louis Malle, won the Palme d'Or at the Cannes Film Festival and an Oscar for Best Foreign Film. The documentary was seen around the world, at the time, and was the first colour film of the underwater world.
Together with the divers, scientists, cinematographers and photographers who accompanied him, the Captain was already worrying that human activities were harming the wonders of the planet. The first television films broadcast in the 1960's testify to a precocious awareness of environmental problems. Later, his films The Golden Fish (with Edmond Séchan) and World Without Sun (1965), also received Oscars. The World Without Sun retraces the one-month life of the Oceanauts in an undersea base, the Houses under the Sea and Conshelf II built at Sha'ab Rumi (Sudan) in the Red Sea.
In 2004, the Cousteau Society returned to the Red Sea with the Cousteau ship Alcyone to explore again the sites where Jacques Cousteau shot the films Silent World and World without Sun and pay homage fifty years later. This extraordinary expedition entitled Le Monde du Silence Revisité (Silent World Revisited) has been filled with adventure, emotions and encounters and results in the last Cousteau Society's filmed.
His television series, among which The Undersea World of Jacques Cousteau, Oasis in Space, The Cousteau Odyssey, North American Adventures, won numerous Emmys in the US. They retrace Cousteau's fabulous expeditions and discoveries around the globe.In fifty years of exploration, with more than a million miles sailed over the planet, 144 films were produced that revealed to millions of families life on expeditions and in the oceans, engraving forever memories of fabulous images. These images taught the public about the mysteries of an underwater world, until then virtually inaccessible. This understanding gave rise to a global awareness of the fragility of the marine environment and motivated each person to feel a responsibility to respect and protect the environment.