THE LIFE of a famous fossil hunter could be brought to the big screen.

Lyme Regis’ own Mary Anning is the subject of a new two-part feature film starring Jenny Agutter of the Avengers, An American Werewolf in London and Call the Midwife.

Director Sharon Sheehan is halfway through shooting the two-part epic, which extensively features Lyme Regis, about the ‘life and loves’ of the eminent palaeontologist but has run short of funding.

She is now hoping to raise £110k to complete Mary Anning and the Dinosaur Hunters.

On her crowdfunding page, Ms Sheehan explains why she was drawn to the life of Mary Anning.

“Her story was inspired during my visits to Lyme Regis to fossil as a child. As a keen fossiller, I began researching and writing her story around the year 2000. My daughter was aged four at the time and we were fossilling in Charmouth.

“We found the most beautiful iron pyrites ammonite that day - the first for her of a myriad of finds. My daughter is now playing Mary in this production.

“Our quest in these productions is to bring her work to light with the recognition she truly deserves for her contribution to science, geology and palaeontology to become one of the most celebrated palaeontologists of all time.”

Funding is needed to complete the first film, which will cover Mary Anning’s childhood and lead up to her spectacular discovery of the ichthyosaur.

With nine days of filming scheduled, £10,000 is needed for film stock and processing requirements.

The remaining £100,000 is required to complete the second film of the two part sequel, covering Mary Anning’s adulthood and her discoveries of the plesiosaur and the pterodactyl.

Lyme Regis Town Council has been asked to consider whether it could provide £5,000 towards the project, subject to both West Dorset District Council and Dorset County Council offering ‘at least’ an equal amount of funding.

The film is in the process of being made on location in Dorset.

Ms Sheehan said: “Once the first film has been shot, editing is planned for the winter months to have the films ready for the first charity gala screening and film festivals in the spring of 2018.

“A special thank you to those of you who have backed this production.”