Written by Michelle Kretzer
out for a run, teen bride Courtney
Stodden proves there's no wrong
way to show off your vegetarian pride.
driver Andy Lally keeps his motor running with healthy vegan
Denise Richards tweeted to PETA asking
for vegan cookbook recommendations, we not
only told her about some but also sent 'em to her, and she tweeted her thanks.
Liam Hemsworth might be in puppy love—he got a rescued dog from girlfriend Miley Cyrus for his birthday. She asked
her Twitter followers always
to adopt, never buy, joining the roster of
celebrity sweet tweeters:
James Franco was inspired by Rise of the Planet of the Apes to join Kevin Nealon and a host of other
celebrities in support of the Great Ape Protection and Cost Savings Act, which aims to get great
apes out of laboratories.
of the great apes' staunchest supporters, Dr. Jane Goodall, is featured on
Beliefnet.com's picks for the Top 10 Animal Rights Activists. Click here to see the full list,
which includes heavy hitters such as Bob Barker, Ric O'Barry, and Russell Simmons.
heavy hitter, PETA
President Ingrid E. Newkirk is making headlines for
not mincing words. Asked what she thought about Real Housewives of New York star Cindy Barshop's real-fur merkins, she responded, "It's
outright sleazy, and it's downright cruel to kill an animal to decorate your
leave you with that.
Written by Jennifer OConnor
© Zebra: deste / sxc.hu | Ribbon:
Elize / sxc.hu
Fading director Cameron Crowe is using wild animals as "actors."
In his new movie, We Bought a Zoo, he used lions, bears, and other
wild animals who are at great risk for abuse because of their strength and
reached out to Crowe and Fox Studios before and during production and warned them
about how wild animals used for films are often subjected to food deprivation,
beatings, and jolts with electric-shock devices during pre-production training and
urged them to use high-tech computer-generated imagery instead, like that used
in the blockbuster Rise of the Planet of the Apes.
Animals rented out
for use in movies aren't often abused on the set—that usually takes place when
no one is around to see it. PETA undercover investigations at wild-animal
training facilities documented that lions and tigers were repeatedly beaten and psychologically abused by
trainers intent on showing them "who's boss." When animals grow too
old or too large to be controlled, they often spend the rest of their lives at decrepit
roadside zoos or backyard menageries.
Please skip this
movie and tweet that animals belong in the wild, not on the big screen, @WeBoughtAZoo.
Written by PETA
Director Cameron Crowe is getting an
earful from world-famous primatologist Dr.
Iqbal Malik, who sent a letter on PETA's
behalf to the director of
the upcoming film We Bought a Zoo, asking him to stop using animals in films.
© edelmar/ iStockPhoto.com
Despite being made aware of the suffering endured
behind the scenes by performing primates, Crowe has made jokes about Crystal, a
capuchin monkey used in the film. But there's nothing funny about ripping primates away from their protective mothers shortly
after birth so that they can be trained to perform tricks. These highly social animals suffer from debilitating
loneliness and depression when isolated from other monkeys as they typically
are in the entertainment industry. In the letter, Dr. Malik asks Crowe to remember that "as 'performing'
monkeys grow older, become sick, or are no longer useful to their trainers,
most are discarded or sold into the pet trade."
As the astonishingly realistic computer-generated primates in Rise of the Planet of the Apes
prove, directors have no excuse for playing a role in subjecting animals to a
life of confinement and loneliness.
Go buy a ticket to Rise of the Planet of the Apes—I
promise that you'll be glued to your seat.
Written by Jennifer O'Connor
Should a wild animal be forced to sell car insurance, dance the Macarena, and smoke cigars to provoke a laugh? Not that it matters if there were millions of chimpanzees around to abuse, but a new study concludes that chimpanzees may be doomed as a species as long as the public continues to see them in commercials and movies.
Scientist Steve Ross, founder of Project ChimpCARE and assistant director of the Lester E. Fisher Center for the Study and Conservation of Apes at Lincoln Park Zoo in Chicago, sums it up: "The inaccurate and frivolous portrayal of these complex and endangered primates should be of serious concern to anyone interested in animal care and safety. Whether intentional or not, these images are resulting in significant effects on perceptions of chimpanzees that may hinder critical conservation and welfare initiatives that much of the general public supports."
PETA has received pledges from 10 of the top 15 advertising agencies in the world not to use great apes in their ads. And watch for innovative high-tech alternatives in Rise of the Planet of the Apes, which opened last weekend. Not one live ape was used in this thriller—don't miss it!
Written by Jennifer O'Connor
What inspired the makers of Rise of the Planet of the Apes, which opens in theaters everywhere today, to create what MTV calls "perhaps the most expensive PSA against animal testing ever filmed"? The film's writers and producers, Rick Jaffa and Amanda Silver, told us in this exclusive interview about the real-life apes who convinced them that their story must be told:
How did your involvement with this movie come about?
Rick had clipped out news articles about chimps raised in human homes and wondered if there was a good story there for a movie. After staring at the articles for a while, he realized that he was looking at a reboot idea for "Planet of the Apes"! We took the idea to Fox and that was the beginning.
Were you aware of the various ways in which great apes are mistreated by humans before you started work on this script? Did you learn anything that really opened your eyes about this issue while doing your research for the film?
Before we started writing the script, we did a lot of research about great apes and chimpanzees in particular. And yes, we were absolutely horrified by the various ways in which great apes are mistreated by humans. As our story came together, it was informed by this information, which indeed helped us galvanize the entire plot.
As you were working on the script, were you concerned that the studio might elect to use live apes for the production? How did you handle that issue?
From the very beginning, we knew that live apes could never be used in the making of this movie—it would be going against one of the major themes of our story. Much to our relief, everyone was on board with this point of view—[Director] Rupert Wyatt, Peter Chernin, and Dylan Clark (our producing partners), as well as the executives at Fox.
Do you feel that technology has gotten to the point where Hollywood can now use computer-generated imagery (CGI) instead of wild animals on set?
We are extremely excited about the fact that technology is getting to the point where Hollywood can rely on CGI instead of real animals on sets. And this technology is quickly improving. It's only going to become more efficient and affordable over time.
What do you feel this film says about humankind's relationship with animals? What are you hoping that people may take away from this film?
Our central theme was always that man's hubris could lead to his downfall—that man should not play God. This obviously extends to his relationship with animals. James Franco's character—and his incredibly nuanced performance—underscores the notion that abuse can sometimes happen even with the best of intentions.
What projects are you working on next?
We've just turned in a film re-write for a big time-travel action movie at Sony. We're currently pitching television ideas that we're very excited about.
Written by Alisa Mullins
I hope you're as stoked as I am to see Rise of the Planet of the Apes, which opens this Friday, August 5. The movie's message and CGI special effects are so animal-friendly that PETA has given director Rupert Wyatt a Proggy Award for recognizing that real great apes don't belong on production sets.
Given the impressive technology available now—and you'll see it in all its glory in this film—there's no need to hire wild-animal trainers who rip baby chimpanzees away from their mothers and physically abuse them to force them to perform on cue.
Run, walk, or swing through the trees—just don't wait to see this movie!
A PETA “chimpanzee” gives Rise of the Planet of the Apes two opposable thumbs up outside the premiere in Hollywood.
Mark your calendars for August 5 in order to be first in line to buy tickets for the highly anticipated Rise of the Planet of the Apes—because no primates were used, harmed, or exploited in the making of the film. Producers 20th Century Fox and director Rupert Wyatt used exclusively computer-generated imagery (CGI), and not a single chimpanzee, orangutan, or monkey had to suffer the stress of behind-the-scenes beatings, confinement to cramped cages, and performing confusing tricks "on cue."
Says Wyatt, "Personally, I had moral problems with the idea of using chimps." An article in The Independent calls the "impressive" CGI apes a "highlight" of the film.
Do Wyatt and 20th Century Fox pull it off? Watch the trailer and judge for yourself:
Written by Jennifer O'Connor
Yes, you read that right. The upcoming movie Rise of the Planet of the Apes, the eagerly anticipated sequel to Planet of the Apes, has done the original one better. Unlike Planet of the Apes, no great apes were used in the production of the sequel—it relies entirely on computer-generated imagery (CGI). As seen in the just-released trailer, the movie’s lead ape character is actually actor Andy Serkis, who, through the magic of CGI and motion-capture technology, is turned into the chimpanzee leader, Caesar.
The spectacular digital effects are courtesy of Weta Digital, the Oscar-winning team behind Avatar, Lord of the Rings, and King Kong (whose director, Peter Jackson, earned a Proggy from PETA).
Chimpanzees and other great apes used for entertainment are torn away from their mothers as babies and physically and psychologically abused during training. When they reach adolescence and become too strong to control, they are often dumped at miserable roadside zoos, as was the fate of Chubbs, one of the chimpanzees used in the Tim Burton-directed Planet of the Apes.
Rise of the Planet of the Apes has a new director, Rupert Wyatt, who wanted to make the point that in this age of advanced realistic CGI technology, there is no need to use great apes in films. Here’s hoping that other studios will take note.
You’ll definitely want to see Rise of the Planet of the Apes. It sounds like a great contender for another Oscar for Weta, and perhaps a PETA Proggy Award too.
Written by Michelle Sherrow
you have a general question for PETA and would like a response, please e-mail Info@peta.org. If you need to report cruelty to
an animal, please click
here. If you are reporting an animal in imminent danger and know where to find the
animal and if the abuse is taking place right now, please call your local
police department. If the police are unresponsive, please call PETA
immediately at 757-622-7382 and press 2.
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Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights? Read more.