06 August 2010

PSA produced by Daniel Azarian addresses the plight of Lolita the orca

Underdog Entertainment
, a New York-based production company has enlisted the talents of Daniel Azarian, director of television commercials and branded entertainment, to produce a Public Service Announcement (PSA) that brings attention to the plight of an orca named Lolita.

Lolita was captured forty years ago this month, taken from her pod family in Puget Sound and transferred to a tank at Miami Seaquarium—the tank is a mere 20-feet-deep only four times her size at its widest point.

The emotional PSA brings a human element into the situation by showing images that we typically see when raising awareness for children in need, homelessness, hunger, and other important causes.

"I wanted to appeal to people who might not understand how unethical Lolita's situation is by presenting her predicament through human eyes," explained Azarian. "Research clearly shows that orcas are sentient, emotional, and highly intelligent beings who are aware of their surroundings. To see such a beautiful 22-foot creature in a tiny 35-foot-wide tank seems inhumane. I felt compelled to do something, so I set the wheels in motion to create this PSA."

Several animal welfare organizations are hoping to retire the 45-year-old Lolita so she can live out the remainder of her life in a more humane environment. A proposed plan would move the orca to a transitional coastal sea pen sanctuary in her home waters of Washington state where she would be rehabilitated and eventually given the option to go back to open waters—if there are no safety concerns. While many organizations are willing to hammer out the details and implement the plan, to date Seaquarium's owners have rejected the idea.

For more information about Lolita and the retirement plan, visit www.savelolita.org

Lolita PSA from Underdog Entertainment on Vimeo.

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Photo Credit: savelolita,org