For more than 40 years, Alex Hershaft has been at the forefront of the animal welfare movement, having founded FARM all the way back in 1976. As a Holocaust survivor, he is a unique and powerful voice advocating for the end of the “oppressive mindset,” particularly as it relates to factory farmed animals.
In this film, we followed Alex as, for the first time in many years, he returned to his homeland of Poland, where members of his immediate family were held in concentration camps and killed by the Nazis. As he explored some of the most harrowing sites from that era, he was able to connect his animal welfare work to the atrocities he remembers from his childhood. It was powerful stuff.
With this film, we hope to help people connect the dots between all forms of the oppressive mindset and start living a more compassionate lifestyle.
Thanks to ProVeg for hiring us to make this impactful shoort film!
Bear baiting and hunting are cruel and sadistic practices. One Protest has been working tirelessly for years to put an end to these atrocities, so when they came to us to create a PSA we were excited about helping them with their crucial mission. AWM worked collaboratively with OP to come up with a concept for a PSA that would resonate with and have an emotional impact on viewers, and we decided on an animated treatment.
The premise: we grow up loving bears, so why do some of us end up wanting to kill them?
AWM worked with South African animation house Impact Animated Video to come up with an artistic yet simple approach, and together with some powerful messaging, the result was this moving PSA.
Animal Welfare Media was fortunate enough to spend a couple of days filming in and around Toronto with Animal Justice, a group of young, passionate animal advocates working within Canada’s legal system to change laws and minds across the country.
We were struck by the intelligence, tenacity and legal prowess of this group of animal heroes, and were thrilled to be able to tell their story.
Before filming in Toronto, we all met at Wishing Well Sanctuary, about an hour’s drive north of the city, where we were greeted by Brenda Bronfman, the proprietor of the sanctuary. Brenda showed us around her beautiful and peaceful farm, where we were able to meet some truly charismatic residents, including a host of pigs, sheep, cows, chickens and one cheeky llama. Jinx the goat really hit it off with our Director of Photography, and a lifelong friendship was formed.
The Humane Society of the United States had a very specific goal in mind: to apply pressure to the Meijer grocery store chain to commit to selling only cage-free eggs in their 200+ stores. AWM’s concept demonstrated, in the most visceral way possible, what life is like for egg-laying hens in cramped battery cages to encourage Meijer to make the switch.
AWM took over the elevators at the historic Homer Building in Washington, D.C. for a day and put 15 dedicated actors through an exercise in patience and stamina. It was a long day, but everyone had a good time working for an important cause.
The result was a highly-shareable video that far exceeded its targeted goal. At the mere threat of HSUS releasing this video, Meijer announced they would be going cage-free by 2025.
Along with HSUS, AWM quickly repurposed this PSA to target Publix and its more than 1,100 stores – and they too soon announced plans to commit to selling only cage-free eggs.
When the Humane Farming Association teamed up with us to create an ironic PSA to educate taxpayers about an overlooked government program that all but encouraged animal abuse, the response was overwhelming.
Working with our SEO partners, the PSA garnered over 2 million views on YouTube in just 2 short months, exposing the real truth about how some questionable public dollars are spent.
And the video continues to pay for itself in donations.
When PETA and AWM teamed up to do a PSA about Sea World’s inhumane practices, the problem of orca exploitation was already widely known. So it was a challenge to figure out how to keep the issue in the public eye.
Conceiving and filming an original and shocking piece of performance art in New York City’s Washington Square Park was a fresh approach, and demonstrated in real time what it’s like when baby whales are separated from their mothers. A committed group of improv actors pulled no punches in depicting the heartbreaking brutality of these practices for an unsuspecting audience, who learned first hand about how they can help end this shocking display of animal abuse.
Chickens are highly-intelligent animals. But not everyone knows that.
In this PSA for The Humane Society of the United States, passersby in New York City’s busy Madison Square Park were promised “free chicken.” What they didn’t realize is that they were not getting a free lunch, but a chance to “meet a chicken, not eat a chicken”!
The heartwarming and quirky piece quickly generated nearly one million views in the first month of release and created a deep connection between two sweet chickens and some tough New Yorkers!
In the election of 2016, there was one bright spot: Massachusetts passed a state-wide law to ban farm animal confinement known as “Question 3.”
As part of the “Yes on 3” campaign, Citizens for Farm Animal Protection and The Humane Society of the United States hired us to create a PSA promoting the passage of the bill.
Our concept was simple: we wondered what would happen if we crammed 15 Bostonians into a tiny cage in front of Faneuil Hall. The answer was equally as simple: they didn’t like it.
The result was a PSA that did its part to move the needle towards passage of the bill, and a better life for all farmed animals in the state of Massachusetts.
What is the best way to demonstrate how cruel the wool industry is? When PETA tasked us with this mission, we knew we had to approach the issue directly and with an unflinching eye. So we decided the best place to spread the message was one of the most densely-populated places in America: Times Square.
When our dedicated group of improv actors donned sheep outfits to show unsuspecting passersby in Times Square just how cruel wool manufacturers can be, we were not surprised by the looks of horror and surprise we received.
We used a couple of well-placed Go Pros to get that immersive, “in-your-face” perspective, and result was this honest PSA that created the buzz PETA was looking for.
When Cy Young winner Max Scherzer agreed to do a PSA for the Humane Rescue Alliance, we were thrilled to be able to produce it. Max was not only great to work with, but so was Glee, the rescue dog-turned-TV star featured in the spot. To add extra cuteness into the mix, Max and his wife also brought along his own three dogs, and filming the whole family for the end of the piece was the highlight of the shoot.
The HRA’s mission is so critical: to care for and find homes for Washington D.C.’s most unwanted and neglected animals. And AWM was honored to help them spread the word!
Animal Charity Evaluators is a unique organization working hard to promote smart choices in charitable giving. When they told us they were in need of a PSA that matches their important mission, we were excited to come up with a concept that would cut through the clutter. We needed something humorous, yet insightful.
At a Washington, D.C. studio, we gathered a group of filmed talented actors – human and animal alike – to help guide people who care deeply about animals towards charitable donations that will make a real difference for millions of suffering animals.
The result was this clever and effective spot.
Responsible Policies for Animals mission is simple: to educate people about the myriad ways we abuse, exploit and take advantage of animals. When RPA asked AWM to come up with a PSA that would cover a lot of ground as quickly as possible – with a very limited budget – we were glad to have the opportunity to create something that we knew would hit the viewer like a ton of bricks.
From eating meat to paving roads to cutting down trees, human beings exploit and abuse animals in almost everything we do. This PSA expresses that idea directly and asks us to change the “animal abuse culture” all around us.
On the court, John Wall is a shining star of the Washington Wizards. But off the court he has a soft spot for rescue dogs, which is why the Humane Rescue Alliance asked him to be a part of their 2017 marketing campaign, and this PSA that AWM produced.
Directing an NBA star and skittish rescue dog at the same time was a challenge, but by the time that we were done, you could feel the love as the two “actors” bonded on and off the screen.
We made this PSA with just one hope: that it results in the adoption of many dogs and cats that so desperately need to find their forever homes.
Before Nonhuman Rights Project was a household name, and before the 2016 documentary about their remarkable work, NhRP came to AWM to do a PSA to help introduce their mission to people. We thought: who better to spread the word about the universality of animal rights than a group of precocious kids?
In a New York City studio, these caring and talented kid actors came together to tell us what they think when they hear the phrase “animal rights,” and why all living things should be considered equal.
The result was this charming and highly-shareable PSA.
This was third in a series of PSAs we produced for Humane Rescue Alliance, D.C.’s most important domestic animal and pet rescue organization. For this PSA, HRA opened their doors to our crew for a day so we could capture their volunteers in action as they work diligently to care for and adopt out dogs, cats, rabbits and other needy animals.
For years, NYClass has been working hard – against all odds – to rid the streets of New York City of the cruel and inhumane carriage horse industry. Animal Welfare Media has long supported their mission, and in the late 2000s we were asked to work on a PSA for them.
While the budget was very limited, our imagination was not. The concept was to suit up an actor in a horse outfit, so he could show viewers first hand exactly what life is like for horses on the busy streets of Manhattan.
The moment our costumed actor locked eyes with one of the actual carriage horses is still one of the most touching moments on any of our shoots.