Atonement star Keira Knightley has shown her support for the charity Women’s Aid in a hard-hitting new TV and cinema campaign launched today, to raise awareness of domestic violence.
The shocking video shows Keira violently attacked by her partner after getting home from a day on set. It’s pretty shocking stuff, especially as the actress is playing herself. The advert ends by panning out to show that the attack is actually happening on a film set, but the set is deserted. It ends with the actress screaming as she’s attacked, and the strapline: “Isn’t it time someone called cut?”
“I wanted to take part in this advert for Women’s Aid because while domestic violence exists in every section of society we rarely hear about it,” she said. “Domestic violence affects one in four women at some point in their lifetime and kills two women every week.”
The video was directed by Joe Wright, who Keira worked with for films Atonement and Pride and Prejudice.
The MediaGuardian are covering the campaign’s struggle to keep the graphic violence in the clip, as domestic violence is an issue that people need to be confronted with.
‘Knightley and Wright, who also directed the actor in a glamorous commercial for Chanel Coco Mademoiselle, have donated their time to make the commercial for free.
The campaign, which also includes poster ads, will run on TV. However, Grey London is still in negotiations with Clearcast, the body that clears ads for broadcast, over editing and any transmission restrictions that will apply to the commercial.
Grey London is aiming to keep the graphic images of the beating in the TV campaign, which will break in mid-April, to maintain the impact of the message.
In 2007, the agency created a shocking and much-publicised press and poster campaign for Women’s Aid featuring celebrities including Jemma Kidd, Fiona Bruce and Anna Friel made-up to look as if their faces were covered in bruises from domestic violence.’
According to Women’s Aid, two women a week are killed by a current or former partner.
Nicola Harwin, the charity’s chief executive, said: “We hope the Women’s Aid campaign will both increase public awareness of domestic violence, letting abused women and their families and friends know that there is help out there, and also raise vital funds for Women’s Aid, to help us to continue in our work.