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Inglorious Basterds Star and General Hottie VonHottenstein Eli Roth Urges Release of Marine Animals

InglorioEli Rothus Basterds star and sexy bitch Eli Roth, 37, has fired off a compassionate, rather well articulated letter to Hamilton James, President and COO of The Blackstone Group, otherwise known as the folks who own SeaWorld.  He writes his thoughtful letter on behalf of himself and PETA, which makes this the first PETA-related piece of news I've supported wholeheartedly in, Christ.  A year?  (I'm an animal rights supporter and will fight a clawing, hair-pulling, groin kicking ghetto fight on behalf of animals, but something about PETA's methods just don't sit right with me.  But I digress.) 

In the wake of last month's SeaWorld tragedy, Roth writes:

Hamilton James

President and COO

The Blackstone Group

Dear Mr. James:

I am writing on behalf of my friends at People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA). As you may know, PETA is the world's largest animal rights organization, with more than 2 million members and supporters around the world.

I feel that I speak for many people when I say that while I was deeply saddened and upset by the tragic death of SeaWorld trainer Dawn Brancheau, I was equally appalled and horrified by the conditions in which SeaWorld keeps its orcas (and other marine life) for the sole purpose of entertaining humans. As someone who works in the entertainment business, I can assure you that there are many humane alternatives available to introduce the public to orcas without having to hold them in captivity for a lifetime against their will. CGI technology, animatronics, and other state-of-the-art virtual reality exhibits could be used in place of the current live-animal shows to provide park visitors with an exciting, educational experience. In fact, showing visitors a more realistic version of what life is like for real marine mammals rather than displaying the captive animals' unnatural and repetitive behavior patterns‹which are linked to their oppressive environment is actually more educational, with no risk to human life. Having grown up in Massachusetts, I often went whale watching and cannot stress the impact on me of seeing whales in their natural environment, not cooped up in a tank performing mundane tricks.

The death of a SeaWorld trainer did not have to happen, and I urge you now to please take action so that it does not happen again. Would you please consider moving your captive orcas and other marine mammals to transitional coastal and wildlife sanctuaries now? Not only is it the humane thing to do, it may well also become, in the long run, the most cost-effective thing to do as public sentiment moves away from watching captive animals perform stunts for human amusement.

As you know, Keiko, the orca who starred in the 1993 movie Free Willy, was returned to his Eli_roth native waters in Iceland in September 1998 after many years of captivity in a facility in Mexico City. Keiko spent the last five years of his life in relative freedom, during which he swam from Iceland to Norway, successfully navigating more than 1,000 kilometers of open ocean. Tilikum deserves the same opportunity, and the wildlife experts who worked on Keiko's rehabilitation can and should be called upon to do the same for Tilikum.  I have heard people say that Tilikum would die in the wild, but in truth many of us would rather see his life end in the freedom of the wild ocean, rather than spend the rest of his life trapped in a tank being forced to perform humiliating tasks.

Last month's incident, as you know, was not the first time that a trainer has been seized, thrown against the walls of the tank, and held underwater by a frustrated orca. It was far more horrific than anything I ever dreamed up in my horror films.  All the violence and suffering in my films is pretend - no one is hurt, ever. Sadly, the same is not true at SeaWorld, which targets their entertainment at families and children.  You are sending a far more dangerous message to kids, whose lives would be just as happy and fulfilled without seeing a large intelligent creature jump around to music for their entertainment, and would probably take a more active interest in protecting whales if they saw them out in the ocean where they belong.

I very respectfully urge the Blackstone Group to immediately proceed with a plan to release the marine mammals at SeaWorld theme parks to sanctuaries that can provide them with a more natural environment.

On behalf of everyone who wants to see whales and dolphins living free in their ocean homes, I thank you for your time and consideration.


Eli Roth

I didn't know anything of Eli Roth until I saw his beautiful mug at the Oscars and I haven't yet seen Inglorious Basterds, but when a celebrity speaks out on a cause for animals I have to admit I take notice.  And let's face it.  He's, how you say, easy on the eyes.  Thanks, Eli, for speaking on such a great cause and, you know, for speaking.  Period.  Because you're hot when you're doing it.

<a href="http://www.radaronline.com/exclusives/2010/03/inglourious-basterds-star-eli-roth-blasts-seaworld-after-whale-attack">Source</a>

. . . 

Anastacia "Jurgen Nation" Campbell likes animals and small shiny objects.

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Yeesh. Not a fan of PETA due to their agreement with BSL (http://www.peta.org/about/hottopic007.asp, read 1st paragraph carefully) so it's hard to know what to do with this. I know people, esp. celebrities, who work with PETA usually mean well but I don't approve of the group's tactics and don't like their jumping on the occasion of someone's death to make their case.

That said, I wish the Orcas had more room and better facilities and fewer were subjected to these shows. I'd like to see the day where only rescued Orcas and dolphins were used for them and that they were more "shows of wild behavior" than trained acts.


Yeah, PETA does more harm than good most times. In this case, I'm happy he spoke out because for most people it's nothing they'd ever think about, you know? So in that case, I think it is a good thing to get on the asses of the right people. I'm more of an ASPCA and HSUS gal. PETA comes off as too hard-core in their tactics and while I understand that the abuse is NOT pretty, at the same time I think there's a certain level of compassion and a gentle touch in getting such a terrible message out there. PETA just scares people and that's not good for our fight. I wish they'd understand how off-putting they can be.


Yep! I'd definitely stick with ASPCA (national & local) and HSUS on the local level (glad to talk to you about that one on the side...).
Also, Eli Roth is sooo yummy. Even if Hostel is horrifying.


that is a well-written letter. i am glad he sent it. there is no crazy in there that can be used to undermine his points which is a refreshing change.


I agree with what he said and it makes me sad to know that his arguments will be dismissed in the interest of profit.

Also? Smart men are sexy.


Go Eli. PETA, eh, but an eloquent statement all the same.

And yes, I would watch him read it. At least once. ;)

Miss Banshee

Eli is MINE! MINE, I TELL YOU!!!!!


@BG, I would love to chat with you anytime about teh amminoz. Will you be in NY in August? First round is on me. To annimoz!

@mouthy_broad, such a great point re there not being any crazy in there that can be used against him. I LOVE that he brought up humane alternatives, BAM, right off the bat. Because there are, there always have been and there will always be humane alternatives if we're willing to remember that there are options and so much that can be explored. And they're cheaper. (Generally, I guess I can't go making blanket statements, but generally they're loads cheaper in cash.) Thank you for your comment, by the way. You, FTW!

@April, speaking of buying a round, I would like to buy you an entire evening of drinks. Let's talk about sexy smart men, which is for the most part an oxymoron. Give me a high IQ over muscles or a hot face ANY DAY OF THE WEEK. Love, love, love. There really is absolutely nothing sexier than intelligence. And compassion and hilarity, but I'm not greedy or anything. If Miss Banshee weren't Eli's perfect match, I'd be all over him. ;)

@Laurie, at least once indeed. Let's post some Bop! photos of Eli in NY at our Spinster Partay, no?

@Miss Banshee, OMG! Can I just tell you I almost dedicated this post to you based on Palinode's email last night.

Tracy H

FYI, he is dating Peaches Geldolf, which I find to be a strange coupling. But yeah, great letter Eli, way to stick up for the animals!


I'm with you on being pro animal but not so pro PETA. PETA has a horrible track record with pit bulls and with adoption in general, and while I am a vegetarian, the ways that they push it actually kept me eating meat for a long time.
I'm very in favor of ASPCA and see the value in HSUS (no, they don't operate local shelters and can be a bit pushy, but overall I think they and their international arm do accomplish a lot of good). Plus HSUS did finally revise their stance on pit bulls and the rehabilitation of fighting dogs, which makes me happy. I hate that they hired Vick to do talks, but they are making a lot of progress with their dog fighting campaign (where they go into the inner cities and actually talk with kids--most of the adults who fight dogs on a nonprofessional level are not evil, they just have a messed up idea of love and don't realize it's cruel because it's all they learned--this does not include professional fighters). Plus I do like that they draw attention to factory farming and they do praise companies that make efforts toward being more humane (they did a fair amount of press praising IHOP when they started transitioning to cage-free eggs, which is a big step).

I grew up near a SeaWorld, far from the coast, and while it was the only time I saw live whales, I think I was more moved by the dolphins I saw in the ocean on a family vacation. SeaWorld seems up there with circuses for me in terms of "why do people do this?"

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