Film: 1981: ROAR: We just hope that nobody dies

Old story but psychologically interesting, and I only just discovered it. Tippi Hedren was the lead actress in Hitchcocks “Birds” where he exposed her to live trapped birds that attacked her. Looks like she enjoyed it – because she later embarked on producing the film Roar where she exposed herself AND her daughter, Melanie Griffith, to the attacks of lions and other wild animals.

The film took 11 years to make, was a box office bomb and produced an amazing amounts of casualties.

Don’t know if this is an animal exploitation film or an idiot exploitation film. Hey, less than a casuality a month, maybe they even fed the lions in between.

Talk about the stupidest business idea ever.

From the wikipedia page:

Over 70 of the cast and crew were injured during the production of this film. Cinematographer Jan de Bont had his scalp lifted by a lion, resulting in 220 stitches. Tippi Hedren received a fractured leg and also had scalp wounds. This occurred after an elephant bucked her off its back while she was riding it. She was also bitten in the neck by a lion and required 38 stitches. This incident can also be seen in the film.

Melanie Griffith was also mauled during the production, receiving 50 stitches to her face; it was feared she would lose an eye, but she recovered and was not disfigured.[6][7] Noel Marshall was attacked so many times that he eventually was diagnosed with gangrene. In one of those incidents, he was clawed by a cheetah when protecting the animals during a bushfire that occurred in 1979. All animals were evacuated though it took several years for him to recover from his injuries.[8] Due to the injuries, turnover was high as many did not want to return to the set. Some of the lions also suffered from illnesses that reduced their population.[3][9][10]

John Marshall was bitten by one of the lions and required 56 stitches.[5] In a 2015 interview, he commented on the film’s notorious tagline that 70 people were injured during the making of the film, saying:

Tippi [Hedren] disputes the number. I believe that number is inaccurate – I believe it’s over 100. It’s somewhere between 70 and 100. It is the most dangerous film ever made in history. Nowadays, there’s so much regulation, if you’re working on a film and two people get injured, they come in and they shut you down. They have safety meetings and they say, ‘What are we gonna do to change this situation?’ If they did that to us after two bites, we would have said, ‘I don’t know what else we can do differently. Should we do it with dogs? I don’t know!’ If we wanna make a movie with lions, people are gonna get bitten. We just hope that nobody dies and we’ll do everything we can to makes sure that doesn’t happen.[5]

And about the plot of the movie:

Upon its initial release. Variety said of the film: “Here is a passionate plea for the preservation of African wildlife meshed with an adventure-horror tale which aims to be a kind of Jaws of the jungle. If it seems at times more like Born Free gone berserk, such are the risks of planting the cast in the bush (actually the Marshalls’ ranch in Soledad Canyon in California), surrounded by 150 untrained lions, leopards, tigers, cheetahs and other big cats, not to mention several large and ill-tempered elephants.”[15] During the film’s 2015 release, Amy Nicholson of L.A. Weekly called the film a “thrilling bore, an inanity with actual peril in every scene. The story is simply “Big cats destroy a house,” since that could be guaranteed.”[16]

Sounds like a real life video game playthrough with boss battles all the time.

The original trailer from 1981. My oh my. Think about it. They showed this and the audience would automatically assume that these people knew what they were doing. But they didn’t. Their plan was “We just hope that nobody dies “.


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