Josh Fox's new film, The Welcome Table, features the stories of climate refugees from across the globe. In Fall 2023, the film's final scene will bring together displaced people and New Orleans residents to eat and celebrate at a 1,000 foot table constructed on a New Orleans levee. 

The term “climate refugee” sounds like something far in the future. Emmy-award winning director and climate activist Josh Fox is here to tell you it’s not. 

“We are in the middle of the climate emergency right now,” Fox said. From landslides in Brazil to rising sea level in Bangladesh, “these aren’t just natural disasters. This is climate change, and it’s going to get worse and worse.”

In 2010, Fox’s film "Gasland" shaped the fracking industry by exposing the negative environmental impacts of the practice. Now, Fox hopes to bring attention to the climate migration crisis with his new film, "The Welcome Table."

Centered around the United Nations’ prediction that at least 1.2 billion people will be displaced by climate change by 2050, Fox’s documentary recounts the stories of climate refugees from around the world.


Emmy-award winning director Josh Fox filming in Kenya for his upcoming movie, The Welcome Table. The Welcome Table is set to be released on HBO this upcoming fall. 

Research for "The Welcome Table" began six years ago, when 51-year-old Fox started filming the border crisis in Texas. Since then, he has collected the stories of migrants across the U.S., South America, Asia and Europe in an effort to encourage “a future that is different from walls and violence.” 

On June 8, Fox and fellow producer Gabrielle Alicino held a fundraiser at the Tennessee Williams House for the final scene of "The Welcome Table," which will be shot in New Orleans in October.

Home-cooked meals and a jazz performance from John Boutte graced the night, as friends and strangers gathered to contribute to the film and witness the inaugural showing of the trailer. 


John Boutté performs at The Welcome Table fundraiser. 

Fox’s vision for the culminating scene is a week of celebration in fall 2023, inviting all participants in the film to New Orleans. The week will end in a symbolic testament to the power of communication and welcoming, a 1,000 foot long table built on a levee where those affected by climate change can sit, converse and eat. 

“When you have more than you need, you shouldn’t build a higher wall,” said Fox. “You should build a longer table.” 

As a city that is also all too familiar with the realities of climate change, it made sense to Fox for the film to come to rest in New Orleans. “The city and its people are still painfully aware that at any moment, life can be drastically altered,” Fox said. 

Fox first came to New Orleans in 2017 to lead a discussion at Loyola University. After graduating Columbia University, he has since split his time between New Orleans and other cities in New York and Pennsylvania. 

“New Orleans has a culture born from hardship and perseverance. I would say it has been the most welcome place on earth,” said Fox. “You’re welcomed by the best food, the best music and celebration. It’s part of the fabric.” 


Guests at Thursday night's fundraiser for Josh Fox's The Welcome Table sit on the floor and listen to a performance by jazz singer John Boutté. 

Not only will the event be for film participants, but all of New Orleans is invited to attend. 

“We have to show that we can survive this crisis with dignity, and we can be good to each other,” said Fox. “'The Welcome Table' will be our way of telling climate refugees, ‘We love you, we care about you, and we see you.’” 

The film is set to be released on HBO in fall. 

Watch the trailer here, and contribute to "The Welcome Table" mission here. To learn more about the film, head to "The Welcome Table" website