ⓘ Behind the Mask (2006 film)


ⓘ Behind the Mask (2006 film)

Behind the Mask: The Story of the People Who Risk Everything to Save Animals is a 2006 documentary film about the Animal Liberation Front. It took three years of filming, interviewing, and editing to complete. The movie was created by animal-rights lawyer Shannon Keith, who owns Uncaged Films and ARME. The documentary was produced in response to a perceived bias in the mainstream media against the animal rights movement.


1. About

The film is about animal rights activists who break into laboratories and other facilities to provide previously unseen footage of the way animals are used.

It includes well-known names within the animal rights movement, some of whom have been imprisoned for taking direct action. The story of Jill Phipps, who was killed when she fell under a lorry while protesting against the live export of animals, is told, with her mother saying, "They call us terrorists but the reality is that over the years four animal rights activists have been killed during protests."

The UK premiere was held on September 7, 2006 at the Exeter Phoenix Arts and Media Centre. Keith Mann gave a talk and answered questions. Mann and others have since toured the film extensively worldwide, organizing screenings in local cinemas and at animal rights events. The Calcutta The Telegraph has said about the film: "Regardless of what one thinks about the tactics of the Animal Liberation Front, the film is an extraordinary one that is well worth watching."


2. Awards

The film has been shown at film festivals, as well as other showings, and has won the following awards:

  • Best Documentary Feature, Santa Clarita Valley Film Festival 2007
  • Documentary of the Year, VegNews, 2006
  • Best Documentary Feature, Independent Features Film Festival 2007
  • Best Documentary Feature, Other Venice Film Festival 2007

The documentary was also in the Official Selection at Santa Cruz Film Festival 2007 and ReelHeART International Film Festival 2007.