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A virtual reality film which gives viewers a fully immersive experience into the life and death of a factory-farmed chicken has been shortlisted for a prestigious award.

iAnimal, produced by international animal advocacy organization Animal Equality, has made the short list for a Raindance VRX Award in the Best Social Impact Experience category.


The five minute film released in December 2016, is narrated by Amanda Abbington, star of Sherlock and Mr. Selfridge.

It features 360° footage filmed by Animal Equality investigators inside intensive chicken farms and slaughterhouses – including a farm in Devon, UK.

Through the lenses of the virtual reality headset, you feel as though you are trapped inside a crowded chicken shed alongside thousands of other birds and then watch helplessly as your flock mates approach the slaughter-man’s knife – knowing that you are next.

Amanda Abbington, who was moved to tears after experiencing iAnimal, said: “This is so horrible, it’s just awful. 

“How can you treat any living thing with such a lack of respect and disregard? People need to be aware, and they’re not.

“You should watch this before you eat meat, because I don’t think you would eat it.”


Dr. Toni Shephard, Animal Equality’s UK Executive Director, said: “Experiencing iAnimal is just as haunting and life-changing as visiting any of the dozens of factory farms and slaughterhouses I have investigated in the UK. 

“It is the closest you can get to experiencing how animals are raised and killed for food.

“We are thrilled that Raindance, the UK’s largest independent film festival, recognises the powerful impact of iAnimal, and its potential to drive social change.”

The winners will be announced during the Raindance Film Festival in September.


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Maria Chiorando

Maria is a news and features writer for Plant Based News. As a former magazine editor, newspaper reporter, and features writer, her work has been published by The Guardian, The Huffington Post, and various regional newspapers, as well as Vegan Life magazine and Vegan Trade Journal. She has interviewed a huge range of people, from Prime Ministers to authors, activists, pop stars and actors, and enjoys the varied range of topics writing for PBN allows her to tackle. She was previously the editor of Plant Based News for over 3 years.