Carole Baskin hits out at Netflix over ’salacious’ Tiger King documentary
24 March 2020, 16:52
Carole Baskin, founder of Big Cat Rescue, is featured heavily in Netflix's Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem, and Madness documentary, but has hit out at creators for the way she was portrayed.
Where is Joe Exotic now? Is the zoo still open? And did Carole Baskin murder her rich husband?
While Joe is locked up in prison and conspiracy theories are awash on the internet about what happened to Don Lewis, there's one person that isn't happy with how the the docuseries turned out - and that's Carole.
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Carole agreed to be in the documentary and was filmed for large chunks of each episode, letting crew behind the scene at the Big Cat Rescue and even recalling what happened the night her husband disappeared knowing it would be shown to millions of viewers, but she's not happy with the way the streaming platform have made her tiger sanctuary appear on screen.
The two issues in question were that Big Cat rescue only uses unpaid workers for its day-to-day running and that the operation never releases the cats into the wild, but rather keeps them in captivity until they die...which ironic since it turns out that Carole herself is allergic to cats.
However, the enemy of Joe Exotic has argued that it's illegal to release the cats into the wild in the US because it's not their natural habitat, and she's aiming to simply reduce breeding activity and give the cubs born in the country a good home. She responded to a post on Facebook criticising her practises by saying: “Any big cat that is born in a cage is doomed to die in a cage.”
She's also added that her workers are all 'intern' volunteers who get housing and regular expenses for their work.
Expressing her disappointment in how Netflix have made her look and the backlash she has since faced, the 59-year-old said in a statement: “When the directors of the Netflix documentary Tiger King came to us five years ago, they said they wanted to make the big-cat version of Blackfish (the documentary that exposed abuse at SeaWorld) that would expose the misery caused by the rampant breeding of big-cat cubs for cub petting exploitation and the awful life the cats lead in roadside zoos and backyards if they survive.
“There are not words for how disappointing it is to see that the docuseries not only does not do any of that but has had the sole goal of being as salacious and sensational as possible to draw viewers.”
Despite her upset with the documentary discrediting her work, she's continuing to run Big Cat Rescue, and is still fighting to take down big breeders and names in the industry, including Bhagavan “Doc” Antle and Mario Tabraue who both also appear in Tiger King.
She's also trying to make the Big Cat Public Safety Act a legal requirement in the US, that will stop the buying and selling of endangered cats.
Surely now we have to have a season two, right?