Empowered Stories

Winter the Dolphin

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​Condition: Tail Amputation
Solution: Prosthetic Tail, WintersGel

Dolphin Tale logo

​​​Warner Bros. Pictures and Alcon Entertainment present the 3D feature film Dolphin Tale, inspired by the amazing true story of a brave dolphin and the compassionate strangers who banded together to save her life.​​​​

About the Movie

Swimming free, a young dolphin is caught in a crab trap, severely damaging her tail. She is rescued and transported to Clearwater Marine Hospital, where she is named Winter. But her fight for survival has just begun.
Without a tail, Winter's prognosis is dire. It will take the expertise of a dedicated marine biologist, the ingenuity of a brilliant prosthetics expert, and the unwavering devotion of a young boy to bring about a groundbreaking miracle – a miracle that might not only save Winter but could also help scores of people around the world.​

Dolphin Tale posterMaking of Dolphin Tale​

The real Winter, who plays herself in "Dolphin Tale," today serves as a symbol of courage, perseverance and hope to millions of people – both able and disabled – who have been touched by her remarkable story of recovery and rehabilitation.  The real prosthetic experts who created Winter’s prosthetic tail, Kevin Carroll, CP, FAAOP and Dan Strzempka, CPO, volunteered their clinical expertise in a technical advisory capacity on set during the making of the film.  Their valuable input was utilized by set designers, the prop team, and the actors to ensure their clinical work with Winter and the prosthetics profession in general was portrayed realistically and accurately.​

Dolphin Tale Cast and Credits​

“​​Dolphin Tale” was filmed on location in Florida, including Winter’s home at the Clearwater Marine Aquarium, whose motto is “Rescue, Rehabilitate and Return.” The film stars the real Winter, who plays herself along with Harry Connick, Jr. as Dr. Clay Haskett, who runs the Clearwater Marine Hospital; Ashley Judd as Lorraine Nelson, a single mother; Nathan Gamble as her son, Sawyer, who frees Winter from the trap and forms a unique connection with the dolphin; Cozi Zuehlsdorff as Hazel, Clay’s daughter, who befriends Sawyer; Kris Kristofferson as Clay’s father, Reed; and Oscar® winner Morgan Freeman (“Million Dollar Baby”) as Dr. Cameron McCarthy, who protrays the role Dan Strzempka and Kevin Carroll and takes on the seemingly impossible task of crafting a prosthetic tail for Winter.

Charles Martin Smith directed “Dolphin Tale” from a screenplay by Karen Ja​nszen and Noam Dromi. The film is produced by Alcon Entertainment’s Andrew A. Kosove and Broderick Johnson (Oscar® nominees for “The Blind Side”) and Richard Ingber. Robert Engelman and Steven P. Wegner served as executive producers.
The behind-the-scenes team included director of photography Karl Walter Lindenlaub, production designer Michael Corenblith, editor Harvey Rosenstock, and costume designer Hope Hanafin. The music was composed by Mark Isham. The film will be distributed in 3D and 2D in select theatres by Warner Bros.
Visit the official movie website at: www.dolphintalemovie.com.

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Dolphin Tale