New West filmmaker shines a spotlight on horse rescue in B.C.

Erin Parks' Unreined is part of the Musicbed Reopen Challenge, and voting for People's Choice winners is now open

A New Westminster filmmaker is hoping local residents will lend their support to a project highlighting B.C.’s horse rescue community.

Erin Parks is the director of Unreined, a short film that shines a spotlight on the work of women who work with horse rescue organizations in British Columbia.

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She’s one of more than 900 international filmmakers competing in the Musicbed Reopen Challenge, which is offering a total of $100,000 in prize money for short films (from 30 seconds to five minutes in length).

Erin Parks
New Westminster filmmaker Erin Parks is shining a spotlight on horse rescue in B.C. with her short film Unreined. - contributed

Musicbed, a company that supplies music for filmmakers to use in their work, runs the Musicbed Challenge each year but notes that this year – thanks to COVID-19 – felt different.

“That is why we have focused this year’s challenge specifically on getting money in the hands of the filmmaking community coming off the heels of quarantine, sharing inspirational stories and bringing about change,” the Musicbed website explains.  “Our goal in launching the Reopen Challenge is to tap into the incredible creatives we connect with and let them tell the stories they believe can impact culture for the better as we move forward. We wanted to support the filmmaking community around the world, so they can continue doing what they love.”

Judges are choosing three winners, who’ll take home $25,000, $15,000 and $10,000 each, while 50 People’s Choice winners will earn $1,000 each.

“I am donating the People's Choice prize money to the rescuers,” Parks wrote in an email. “Voting ends on July 29, and people can vote every day!”

Parks has a longstanding career in film editing. She has been editing factual television for over 15 years, from documentary to reality for CBC, National Geographic, History and Discovery Channel. Most recently she edited on Border Security: America’s Front Line, Jade Fever and High Arctic Haulers. Her passion for animals and the love of weaving a story have also inspired her to direct and produce a number of independent documentary films.
To help Parks help the horse rescuers, New West fans can watch the film online and vote at

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