Redwings’ recent animation about Anna Sewell, the author of Black Beauty, is in the running for a Charity Film Award, and the sanctuary is urging supporters to vote for it to win. Voiced by Dame Joanna Lumley (pictured below), who gifted her time to the project, the animation tells the story of how Anna came to write Black Beauty and the huge impact the world-famous novel had on animal welfare.

The film was produced by Norfolk-based Meantime Media in conjunction with the University of East Anglia with funding from the Arts and Humanities Research Council.

“We’re so proud of this animation, which was launched at the end of November to coincide with the anniversary of the date Black Beauty was first published, along with our special fundraising edition of the book which raises money for us here at Redwings,” said Nicola Knight, Head of Communications and Campaigns at Redwings and a lifelong fan of Black Beauty.

“Our partnership with the UEA began after Redwings took on the stewardship of Anna Sewell House in Great Yarmouth, where she was born and lived as a child, and through our shared love and appreciation of the local author.

“We hope the film will educate those who weren’t aware of the impact Anna’s work had, and continues to have, hundreds of years later, on the welfare of horses.”

Professor Thomas Ruys Smith, who is a specialist in 19th century literature at the UEA, said it had been a “joy” to work with Redwings on the project.

“It’s high time that Norfolk’s most successful literary export was recognised for the impact she had on the world, and it’s a privilege to be a part of that effort,” he said. “We are so grateful to Meantime Media for their wonderful work on the animation and to the Arts and Humanities Research Council for their support with funding. We hope it will really tell the story of how this incredible fictional creation came to be and are absolutely thrilled to be in the running for a Charity Film Award.”

The Charity Film Awards celebrate the use of film by the third sector to change mindsets and raise awareness of good causes and the work they do. They are organised by Smiley Movement CIC, the non-profit organisation for social and environmental good that is sponsored by the original Smiley™ brand and aims to drive positive change in the world.

The winners of the 7th annual Charity Film Awards will be announced at a gala ceremony in central London on 20th March, which is also International Day of Happiness.

Redwings was awarded silver in the People’s Choice Category (£5-20 million turnover) in 2022 with their film about a blind Clydesdale horse called Boo. ‘A Second Chance for Boo’ was produced by Norfolk company Immersive Studios and narrated by Norfolk-born actor and writer Stephen Fry.

To vote for the Redwings film, click here. Voting is open until midnight on Wednesday (24 January).

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