"The Cove" spotlights the annual slaughter of wild dolphins in Japan, but that did not stop the filmmakers behind the Oscar-winning documentary from using their time at the podium to decry the plight of captive mammals here in the U.S.
Oscars in hand, the filmmakers criticized the environment they believe led to the horrifying death of a trainer at SeaWorld by an orca. Blaming the captivity for the tragedy, dolphin advocate Ric O'Barry called for a boycott of popular show attractions such as SeaWorld to prevent further occurrences in the future.
"We're asking the public, please, do not buy a ticket for a dolphin show," said O'Barry, saying this is the only way to ban such popular productions. "That is the solution. The government is not going to fix this problem. The consumers have all the power."
Orcas are part of the dolphin family.
"The Cove" director Louis Psihoyos said being kept in captivity distorts the animals' true personality. 'There's never been a wild dolphin --and an orca is a wild dolphin-- in the history of man known to be killing a human being in the wild," he insisted.
"And you have one killer whale, who's been known for killing only whales, killing three human beings in one lifetime," Psihoyos continued. "If anything, this teaches us that these animals don't belong in captivity."