Water Torture for Elephants

Posted on May 10, 2011


I think its pretty amazing when I watch a movie or a show that has animals doing things. Its always amazed me how they train an animal like a dog or tiger or even an elephant to do some of the things. When I was younger, I always assumed that the trainer would be holding a peice of meat behind the camera, moving whereever the animal needed to go.

But, the truth is hard to bare than the imagination i had as a child. For all the Twihards out there, Im pretty sure your looking forward to the upcoming film of Edward Cullen’s alter ego, Robert, called “Water For Elephants”. The film revolves around Robert Pattinson and Reese Witherspoon. As well as Tai, a 45-year-old Asian Elephant who is the star of the show.

Tai Stars alongside Robert Pattinson in Upcoming "Water for Elephants"

Cast and crew were said to have fallen in love with the elephant,  Robert was even quoted saying “She was the best actor I ever worked with in my life,” he says. “I cried when the elephant was wrapped. I never cried when anyone else was wrapped.” (Vanity Fair, April 2011)

However, what no one saw was the brutal methods used to train Tai in the run up to shooting. Animal welfare charity, Animal Defenders International (ADI), released a video this week of the brutal methods used to train Tai and other elephants by their keepers at the performing animal supplier Have Trunk Will Travel, of California.

Although trainers and crew members insisted Tai was care for and treated properly, the same cannot be said for before Tai was cast. The video released by ADI was shot in 2005 and shows how Tai and her fellow elephants were shocked with electric, beaten with bullhooks. A baby is even hooked through its lips while it cries out. The video is extremely distressing.

ADI is currently distributing the videos amongst those involved in the filming of “Water for Elephants” in hope of getting the news out and stopping the abuse these poor creatures go through for our ‘entertainment’. This has got to stop. How many times will we have to tell the public about abused animals. Anne the Elephant got her freedom… so should the rest of them!

To watch the full video CLICK HERE