Should you bump into Hugo Weaving this evening, marching determinedly down George Street, please resist the temptation to stop him and have a chat: he might be cutting it fine to get on stage for Uncle Vanya at the Sydney Theatre Company, having only moments before appeared on stage as an ambassador for Voiceless at its annual media prize and grants event at Sydney Town Hall. ”He’ll be on stage from 6pm to 6.30 with us,” Michael Young, a Voiceless spokesman, told us. ”We offered to get him a car but he said: ‘No, I’ll be fine. I’ll walk and get to make-up by five to seven and be on a stage with Cate [Blanchett] and Richard [Roxburgh] by 7.30pm’.” Young said that Weaving had been an ambassador for Voiceless since it began in 2004, having bumped into its founder, the ubiquitous Brian Sherman, at Los Angeles airport. ”They were just chatting and Hugo’s kids were vegetarians, and so Brian asked him. Apparently Weaving is now vegetarian himself.” Tonight Voiceless will give away nearly $200,000 in grants, ranging from $500 to $20,000 each, to anyone with a good idea to better the lot of animals. ”It could be raising awareness through education or a school building chicken coops,” Young said. ”On the night we give away about 20 grants, and since 2004 we’ve given away $1.2 million.” One such grant, of about $15,000, went to Fiona Corke and Nikki Sutterby, who hope their emotive advertisement about kangaroo culling (3 to 4 million, we were told, are killed every year for pet food, leather and dinner; the Joeys, surplus to requirements, are cruelly slaughtered) will screen on commercial TV next year.