The animal rights group in a letter asked Universal Content Productions to use "CGI or animatronics" in the upcoming limited series.
People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals on Tuesday asked Universal Content Productions and Kate McKinnon not to use live animals in their upcoming limited series about Joseph Maldonado-Passage, aka "Joe Exotic," a big-cat exhibitor profiled in the Netflix breakout docuseries Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness.
"Netflix's Tiger King is calling critical attention to the abuse and neglect endured by big cats and other wild animals used for entertainment — progress that will be undone if real wild animals are used in Universal Content Production's upcoming series," PETA senior manager of animals in film and television Lauren Thomasson said Tuesday in a statement obtained by The Hollywood Reporter.
"We hope you'll agree that using technology such as CGI or animatronics or existing footage is the only conscionable way of depicting animals for your series," she added.
McKinnon is set to star in the spinoff as Carole Baskin, an animal rights activist at the heart of Tiger King. The Netflix docuseries chronicles Joe Exotic's eventual arrest and conviction on multiple charges of animal abuse, as well as a murder-for-hire plot to kill Baskin.
PETA has a history with Joe Exotic's facility, having worked for years to shut down his Greater Wynnewood Exotic Animal Park. The animal rights group insists undercover work revealed tiger cubs had died at the park.
"PETA managed to rescue nearly 50 animals from Joe Exotic's custody, all of whom are currently at reputable sanctuaries, and it also filed two lawsuits against facilities that acquired federally protected big-cat cubs from Joe Exotic for alleged violations of the Endangered Species Act ESA," the group said.
SPOILER ALERT: If you are among the few who haven’t actually watched Netflix’s Tiger King docuseries, this review contains a lot of details about what goes down in the sad big cat saga.
With Netflix poised in the coming days to cash in and crank the base up a notch with more Tiger King, it's time to come out and say it: I hate the Red State porn that is the crash and burn of Joe Exotic
The initial seven episodes of this septic and shallow patchwork of trademark infringement, sex, guns, labor exploitation, song, drugs, mullets, betrayal, animal activism, revenge, and a lot of big cats may be much binged over these weeks of coronavirus lockdown, but that doesn't mean it's actually worth watching.
Now, I get it, I sound like I'm just a dour critic who hates anything that isn't prestige premium cable or aspirational. C'mon man, you want to say, Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness is just so unbelievable, I can't look away.
I respectfully disagree, and in fact, propose Tiger King isn't just bad, but dangerous in a divided America persistently looking to reduce the other side to caricature.
In a presently ailing nation where TV is more voluminous and vital than ever, the truth is the March 20 launched Tiger King is a clawed white trash misery index. Gawking at some clearly fragile and damaged people like would-be reality TV star Exotic and their below the Mason-Dixon line antics, the series subsequently provides a cultural circus for those smug bicoastals under stay at home orders and screaming to rise up in moral superiority.
Essentially, the tale of big cat collector, self-styled Oklahoma zoo proprietor and 2016 Presidential candidate Exotic AKA Joseph Maldonado-Passage and his ultimately unsuccessful attempt to have rival Carole Baskin knocked off by a hitman hired for $3,000, Tiger King is in that context more a zero-sum game, literally and figuratively, than hitting the zeitgeist.
Obviously, Netflix are pretty damn good at gauging and dragging the public mood over the years, as the likes of the then phenomenon of 2015's Making A Murderer or 2018’s Wild Wild Country prove. Yet, for all the attention it has drawn, this unfocused murder for hire exploration of sorts emerges as a bastard child of Cops, a million Dateline segments from the 1990s and Fox’s short-lived Murder in Small Town X reality show from 2001.
Not exactly the prestige product that the home of Roma, The Irishman and American Factory likes to brag about at award shows. Then again, with the knowledge that the Romans sold out the Colosseum every night feeding Christians to the lions, the bottom line based House of Hastings surely loves the subscription sign up that the currently incarcerated Maldonado-Passage and the accompanying motley gaggle of...