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BOYCOTT the Film Water for Elephants
animal rights |
Tuesday May 10, 2011 09:13 by Bernie Wright - Alliance for Animal Rights [AFAR] bigbrownrat at gmail dot com 0872651720
CRUELTY to elephants- beaten and electric shocked during film training
Animal rights group appeal to Irish filmgoers to boycott Water for Elephants due to Cruelty.
A Video released today by Animal Defenders International shows the elephant that appears alongside Reese Witherspoon and Robert Pattinson in the new film Water for Elephants, being beaten and electric shocked during training.
We in AFAR are now urging the General Public to boycott this film in IRELAND.
Press Officer Bernie Wright says ‘the animal defenders video released today shows a 42 year old Asian Elephant being beaten and electric –shocked to make her obey commands. Anywhere animals are used in performances one has to question the methods used in training. Unfortunately in circuses and in Films undercover investigations often reveal the darker side of animal training, all too often this involves blatant cruelty as in this case.
We commend ADL for exposing this animal violation. We are calling on Irish film goers to boycott this film. We intend to hand out flyers at cinemas in Dublin.’
Water for Elephants, a romantic drama set in a 1930s animal circus in the USA, starring Reese Witherspoon and Robert Pattinson, is premiering all over the world this month, with the London premiere last Tuesday. But the biggest star of the film is 42-year-old Asian elephant Tai, who plays Rosie, supplied by the performing animal supplier Have Trunk Will Travel, of California. However, shocking video, filmed at Have Trunk Will Travel in 2005, and posted online today by Animal Defenders International (ADI) after the London premiere, tells a different story.
Watch the video here:
• Elephants including Tai are repeatedly given electric shocks with hand-held stun guns
• Tai cries out when being shocked into performing a headstand
• Elephants, including Tai, are beaten about the body and legs with bull hooks
• A baby elephant is hooked in the lip and cries out
• An elephant is pinned with bull hooks while her tusks are sawed down, close to the bone
Jan Creamer, President of ADI, said: “We were uncomfortable with the message of this film, but the more we saw the repeated assertions that this elephant has been treated with love and affection and never been abused, we realized that we had to get the truth out. The public, the stars and the filmmakers have been duped. This poor elephant was trained to do the very tricks you see in the film by being given electric shocks.”
Kari Johnson, another of the founders of Have Trunk Will Travel, has previously stated: "Have Trunk Will Travel has never issued a written endorsement, nor does it condone using electrical devices to discipline and control elephants except in situations where elephant or human safety is at risk."
Gary Johnson and trainer Joanne Smith appear in the video giving the elephants electric shocks.