Animal Emotions

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"The Grey" Has It All Wrong About Wolves

This new film misrepresents and vilifies wolves and actors actually ate them

Popular media often mispresents animals as who they want the public to think they are, rather than representing them as who they actually are. This sort of sensationalsm is good for filling their pockets with money but harms the animals.

A new movie called "The Grey" continues this tradition by misrepresenting wolves as violent hunters who harm humans. Nothing could be further than the truth, there having been only two recent fatal wolf attacks on a human documented in North America. 

In addition to the misrepresentation of these magnificent animals, actors also ate two wolves. To quote from an article about the making of this movie: "To get the cast of 'The Grey' in the mood for the wild, director Joe Carnahan had wolf stew prepared for them. The meat was made from real wolves. And no, it didn't taste like chicken. Many cast members lost their lunch. But [Liam] Neeson 'went up for seconds of the wolf stew. A few guys did upchuck. We all knew what we were eating. All I can say is it was very game-y. But I'm Irish, so I'm used to odd stews. I can take it. Just throw a lot of carrots and onions in there and I'll call it dinner.''"

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It's known that the misrepresentation of chimpanzees by media can harm efforts to protect and conserve them and there is every reason to think that "The Grey" will have the same effect on wolves who are wantonly killed because they are no longer protected by the Endangered Species Act. There really are some people for whom killing wolves makes them happy and this movie will provide the perfect motivation to continue to do so and to rally some of their friends to join in the fun.  

WildEarth Guardians makes it easy for you to protest this movie. Please do so. Wolves need all the support they can get. The company that made the film is Open Road Films, 12301 Wilshire Boulevard, Suite 600, Los Angeles, California 90025; Phone: 310-696-7575.

Marc Bekoff, Ph.D., is Professor Emeritus of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Colorado, Boulder.

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