In 2010, SeaWorld trainer Dawn Brancheau was killed by the 12,000-pound killer whale, Tilikum. Brancheau was an experienced trainer with SeaWorld, having worked with orcas for years. But in "Blackfish," the filmmakers say this tragedy was not an isolated incident or freak accident. The filmmakers say there are dozens of reports of killer whales in captivity harming trainers and they even say Tilikum was responsible for the death of another woman years earlier.
The filmmakers of "Blackfish" spoke to multiple experts and former trainers and go back decades in their investigation into what happens to these highly intelligent animals when they are held in captivity. But what did you think of the documentary 'Blackfish'? Here are some of your tweets:
— Melissa Bueno (@MissyyyGood) October 25, 2013
— Jamie Boyce (@kadaja66) October 25, 2013
The one time people are passionate for animals, it's due to a one-sided profitable documentary that's caused widespread ignorance #blackfish
— Chris Sparks (@CrisisSparks) October 25, 2013
#Blackfish on CNN will make you furious. Let those poor, tortured whales go. Watch them in the wild, on YouTube you dopes.
— TC (@TFCochran) October 25, 2013
— Carrie Ainsworth (@carrieainswrth) October 25, 2013
— Samantha Riley (@RilesS22) October 25, 2013
— Ayasha Williams (@ayashayasmeen) October 25, 2013
SeaWorld, in a statement to HLN said, “'Blackfish' is billed as a documentary, but instead of a fair and balanced treatment of a complex subject, the film is inaccurate and misleading and, regrettably, exploits a tragedy that remains a source of deep pain for Dawn Brancheau’s family, friends and colleagues. To promote its bias that killer whales should not be maintained in a zoological setting, the film paints a distorted picture that withholds from viewers key facts about SeaWorld – among them, that SeaWorld is one of the world’s most respected zoological institutions, that SeaWorld rescues, rehabilitates and returns to the wild hundreds of wild animals every year, and that SeaWorld commits millions of dollars annually to conservation and scientific research. Perhaps most important, the film fails to mention SeaWorld's commitment to the safety of its team members and guests and to the care and welfare of its animals, as demonstrated by the company’s continual refinement and improvement to its killer whale facilities, equipment and procedures both before and after the death of Dawn Brancheau."
Michael Scarpuzzi, SeaWorld’s Vice President of Zoological Operations, also wrote an op-ed in the San Diego Union Tribune, “SeaWorld’s benefits to conservation, research ignored” which you can read here.