November 29, 2009

Animals in Entertainment

Sometimes you have to reflect on the past to realise how much things have changed... and watching some movies that a friend posted on Facebook reminded me that we have come a long way in our attitudes on how we use animals in films and shows now.

I started thinking about it further after seeing this video clip - we all thought, it is rather disturbing...  on quite a few levels.

Today she drew my attention to the famous diving horses that were popular in the 30's.. particularly in Atlantic City. I confess I had never heard of them! The original horses were diving from 60ft high.

One of the divers was blinded by hitting the water with her eyes open, but continued to do it for many years. Disney even made a movie about her - which was heavily romanticised, but contains interesting footage of how they did the diving...

But on looking around, there are films of horses doing it in the 50's in Miami, and to my amazement, this strange practice is still happening today. Nowadays, they don't have a rider... but I still feel it is exploitation.

I am sure there is footage out there somewhere of the chimpanzee tea parties so often held at zoos.

Animal films and tv programmes have been around since television started... who can forget Lassie, Mr Ed, Flipper, Skippy, The Incredible Journey and Daktari to name just a few I grew up with. However, I imagine the requirements for the use of real animals in filming has altered dramatically since those days!

"No animals were harmed in the making of...."

I guess it depends on how you interpret "harm"?


  1. Here in Sydney they have Diving pigs at the Easter Show. We keep getting told the pigs love it, & it is true they appear to be happy.

  2. Posting it in a movie and wording it with the word harm. For such a notice to be allowed in Canada they would have to use the Oxford dictionary definition of the word.

    The states has separate laws for each state and each has it's own constitution so I can't say for the US.

  3. awww I don't agree with that! Harmful or not it still isnt right. xxx

  4. And then of course there is the more recent "Babe"

  5. Can't bear the thought, I often wonder when I see that phrase.

    Just wanted to say thanks for your comments and support at mine. I now you have been there and really appreciate your taking time to comment.


Comments welcome....always love to hear what you think!


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