Simply by virtue of having “Zookeeper” in the title, you know your film is going to get picketed by PETA (which I would argue is a great reason for PETA to reevalute their strategy). But PETA says Paul Blart Zookeeper is no laughing matter, and not for the same reasons everyone else does. They’re angry because KEVIN JAMES KILLED A GIRAFFE! Here’s their explanation (completely unbiased, I’m sure) of why
Just a month after PETA wrote to the cast and producers of The Zookeeper [PAUL BLART ZOOKEEPER] to warn them that the company supplying animals for the movie’s production has a long list of USDA citations, we have heartbreaking news to report. Tweet, a giraffe on the set who had also been forced to perform in Ace Ventura and a slew of Toys “R” Us commercials, has died.
Tweet collapsed in his pen while being fed on [September 15th, 2009]. While giraffes in the wild can live into their mid 20s, Tweet was only 18 years old.
The results of Tweet’s necropsy haven’t been released yet, but according to a whistleblower who contacted PETA, Tweet’s premature death may have resulted from his eating pieces of the blue tarp that covered his enclosure. The whistleblower alleges that Tweet’s owner and trainers were notified that the giraffe had been eating the tarp but that they did nothing about it. [PETA]
Shouldn’t it be the giraffe’s choice whether he (OR SHE) wants to eat blue tarp? Slow your roll PETA, you fascists. And anyway, yes, giraffes in the wild may live to 25, but let’s not forget, Tweet was a giraffe child actor. Consuming harmful substances and dying prematurely is just par for course. 18 years is 72% of its expected life span. Lights Camera Jackson should be so lucky.
Here’s director Frank Coraci talking about the giraffe dying (starts at 2:00). Incidentally, he’s also the guy directing Paul Blart: MMA Fighter. YAY! I CAN’T WAIT FOR THAT!