The Best Work You May Never See: House 337, Blinkink Director Will Wightman Address Animal Cruelty In Fashion For PETA

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Robert Goldrich
Tuesday, Mar. 28, 2023

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London agency House 337 has put a band of singing abused animals center stage in an unvarnished new online and social media campaign for PETA highlighting animal cruelty in fashion. It is the first time that PETA has teamed up with the agency to campaign against wearing any animal-based products at all, even wool, and encouraged consumers to embrace vegan fashion.

Set on a farm reminiscent of classic children’s TV shows of bygone decades, actress and comedian Jessie Cave meets wholesome, seemingly cheery puppet animals who burst into an upbeat, catchy, yet gruesome song about the cruel treatment they endure in the name of fashion.

This powerful and memorable video titled “Red River Farm” is part of PETA’s ongoing work to re-educate the public about using animal products in fashion. It offers an unflinching explanation of how clothes are really made and the consequences for the animals involved. However, the campaign ends with a message of hope, asking the audience to: “Shop like their lives depend on it.”

Created with London-based production studio Blinkink, the video will run across PETA’s owned social media channels, including Instagram, Twitter, YouTube and Facebook. The two-year campaign will be backed by an undisclosed media spend to promote it across Instagram and Facebook. It is the debut advert from Will Wightman, who signed for Blinkink after winning the best director award at the BFI Future Film Festival last year. In addition to directing the film, he wrote the song, with sound effects and musical development coming from String & Tins.

Steve Hawthorne, creative director at House 337, said, “A big part of the challenge with these sorts of projects is finding a fresh and engaging way to talk to people that avoids using the same old finger-wagging shock tactics many charities use. That is where our band of cute-but-grotesque puppets came in. We’re very happy with the final film and really hope that it gets people to question the clothes they buy and where they come from.”

PETA approached House 337 to work on the campaign following the success of the agency’s 2020 work with the wildlife charity Born Free Foundation.

Blinkink director Wightman said, “My work up until now has always been about working with whatever resources I can get my hands on, so the chance to create something more authored and designed was an amazing experience. This project was all about tone for me; combining a tongue-in-cheek sense of humor with these intense emotional beats felt like an amazing way to talk about this subject in a new and impactful way. I feel insanely lucky to have worked on such an important project and to do so alongside such an outstanding group of creative and technical minds.”

 

Credits

Client PETA Elisa Allen, VP of programs & operations; Iona Kirby, relations manager. Agency House 337 Jo Moore, Leon James, executive creative directors; Steve Hawthorne, Katy Hopkins, creative directors; Holly Fallows, Charlotte Watmough, sr. creatives; Victoria Fischer, Lawrie McLintock, sr. producers; Nick Dinne, designer; Gemma Glover, influencer lead; Duncan McLaughlan, social strategist. Production Blinkink Will Wightman, director; Josef Byrne, exec producer; Alex Halley, head of production; William Kay, producer; Molly Turner, production manager; Charlotte Herbert, production assistant; Ewa Luczkow, storyboards; Mysie Pereira, concept artist; Mickey Miles, graphic designer; Anna Argiros, 1st AD; Toby Goodyear, DP; Sarah Cherry, makeup & hair; Brin Frost, art director; Jimmy Wilkes, Connor Chung, Rosie Tonkin, Sam McSweeney, Connor Quinn, art department; Isabel Garret, puppet maker; Areeya Bass, puppet wrangler; Charil Dubery, lead puppeteer; Kim Scopes, Matt Lyons, Mikey Brett, puppeteers. Talent Jessie Cave  Editorial tenthree Nick Armstrong, editor; Rachel Goodger, edit producer; Caroline Tarrago, compositor. Color Grade no.8 Alex Gregory, colorist; Charlie Morris, color producer. Audio String and Tins Jim Stewart, sound design & mix; Kaspar Broyd, Foley; Olivia Endersby audio producer. Music Joe Wilkinson, music composition; Will Wightman (Blinkink), music composition & lyrics. Postproduction Absolute Phil Brewster, post producer; Joe Tang, Toby O’Connell, VFX.

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