title: 'Born free Virginia McKenna' published: true publish_date: '31-08-2016 14:56' taxonomy: category:
- Politics tag:
- Born Free Foundation
- Virginia McKenna 'Post Type':
As Britain awaits the first birth of a giant panda, VoR's Tim Ecott speaks to Virginia McKenna, who, is perhaps best known for her portrayal of the African conservationist Joy Adamson in the 1966 film ‘Born Free’. McKenna’s real life husband – Bill Travers - played Joy Adamson’s husband George Adamson and the film was instrumental in changing public attitudes to keeping animals in captivity. Together, Virginia McKenna and Bill Travers went on to make numerous wildlife documentaries and starred again in another classic film Ring of Bright Waterinspired by the writings of the naturalist Gavin Maxwell about his life in Scotland with a tame otter. Animals and their welfare became so important to Bill and Virginia that they set up the Born Free Foundation, a campaigning charity which works to save wildlife and promote conservation worldwide. I wanted to hear from Virginia about her work with animals, but also about her film career. Many of her best known roles were in films about the Second World War, and included The Cruel Sea, Carve her Name with Pride; and A Town Like Alice. Her co-stars included some of the greats of British cinema - Jack Hawkins, Paul Scofield and Peter Finch to name just a few.