Interview with Dr. Jane Goodall for the Chimpanzee Premiere #chimpanzee #meetoscar

Attending the red carpet premiere of Disneynature’s “chimpanzee” was of course a very exciting part of my trip to Florida, but the interviews that followed the film, were equally exciting. Our first interview of the day was with Dr. Jane Goodall. That is a name that I think just about everyone knows, when discussing conservation and nature. Dr. Jane Goodall is absolutely stunning. When I say stunning, I don’t mean she sparkled in a fancy dress at the premiere, but stunning in the sense that she appeared to be very comfortable in her own skin, and so passionate about what we were talking about that whole day.

Dr. Goodall is a huge source of information. I tell you what, if you aren’t passionate about nature in the least, or about being green; you sit down and chat with Jane Goodall for a moment and your mind will be changed! That woman knows how to get a message across – even with her soft spoken voice.

I thought I would highlight a few of my favorite questions of the interview with Dr. Jane Goodall. Some are directly related to the film “chimpanzee” and others are not.

Q: “How rare is it for a male to adopt a chimpanzee?”

A: “We have had brothers adopt their little infant sister or brother. One 12-year old chimpanzee, which is like a human 15 or 16 yea rold, adopt an unrelated chimpanzee. And over all these 52 years, I’ve heard of one other story of an alpha male adopting an infant, so it’s very rare. Very rare.”

This just goes to show you how fortunate it is that Disneynature was able to capture this unusual circumstance on film!

Jane tells us about the conservation and how all of us going to see “chimpanzee” during opening week, can help those chimpanzees.

Jane: “Everybody who goes to see this film in its first week, the Jane Goodall Institute gets a percentage to the ticket sales. All of that money is going to actually help us look after our little Oscars. Orphan chimps whose mothers were killed in the bush meat trade. And it’s very expensive, looking after them, and right now we’re struggling to get the funds to prepare the big island in the middle of the river. We put a sanctuary with over 150 chimpanzees, which will make a safe place for the adults, for some of our orphans and our full-grown. It can bevery dangerous for them, and it’s very dangerous for our staff, so we need to raise this money. And they’re very smart, So it’s a bit desperate.”

Q: “What do you think is the biggest misconception about chimpanzees?”

A: “That they remain nice and cute and sweet. That they make wonderful pets. I think those are, for them, the  worst misconceptions.”

And here is the question that I asked:

Q: “I think the average person doesn’t feel that they are that capable of making big change, so if there is one thing that we can tell the average person to do to change, to help a cause like this, what would you suggest?”

A: “Well, the most important thing — I mean, I could say, please join JGI. And I do say that. But that’s not the message. The message is: just spend a little bit of time each day thinking about the consequences of the choices you make. What you buy: Where did it come from? Does it involve cruelty to animals? How was it made? What do you eat? What do you wear that does involve child-slave labor or sweat shops? How many miles has it traveled? How was the environment damaged? And when people start thinking like that, they begin making first, small changes, and then usually, bigger changes. The difficulty is getting people to understand that what you do matters. That what each one of us does every day is having an impact on the planet, and we have a choice.What kind of impact do you want to make?

Don’t start thinking, oh, well, it doesn’t matter what I do, ’cause I’m one. If yo were one, it wouldn’t  matter two hoots, but you’re not one. You’re a growing number of people, all around the world, and it’s when everybody starts thinking like this — and children are changing their parents and their grandparents. So we’re moving in the right direction, but not fast enough. An organization like Disney can help us to spread a message faster and further.”

Wow – isn’t that just something? I love how passionate Jane became when talking about what WE can all do to help improve the planet. She just gave us all quite the inspirational message. After Dr. Goodall answered my question, I felt inspired – inspired to be more conscientious. What about you?

“chimpanzee” is officially out in theatres so please see it during opening week, to help save the chimpanzees!

Photo credits to Better in Bulk.


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Emily Buys

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