Skip to Main Content

Matt Damon Says Shut SeaWorld Down

Written by PETA | March 1, 2010 / CC
Matt Damon


“I think they should just shut them all down. I’ve never been a fan of places like that.”
Matt Damon on SeaWorld

This weekend, Damon joined Bob Barker and tons of other stars who are speaking out against SeaWorld after yet another trainer was killed by the imprisoned orca Tilikum.

The only ocean-dwellers we want to see perform? Matt Damon and his Ocean’s franchise co-stars. Add your voice to the thousands who have already told SeaWorld to release its animals to sanctuaries immediately.

Written by Logan Scherer

Commenting is closed.
  • Cindy Wines says:

    I agree. Free Tilly! Free the elephants and tigers at the circus!! The children should not see the abuse. It is not good education for them to get desensitized to this abuse! All caged animals should be free. Tilly was probably very frustated and wanted to play wanted mental stimulation. Get the movie stars together to also free Billy from the LA zoo. See my website

  • Amy Margentino says:

    I’m ashamed to say I was Seaworld discovery cove last year with my children. I did notice a very strong teaching conservation message tied in to all activities that was especially focused toward children. However seeing animals in enclosures too small for them especially the whales has always been upsetting to me regardless of the message. Also while freeing the whales and other animals would be the ultimate gift we could give them we have to be careful what we are releasing them into. The U. S. and a few other countries may be cracking down on pollution and poaching but there are locations where these issues are still a HUGE problem. Ex thousands upon thousands of sharks have their fins cut off for shark fin soup while their bodies are throw back so they sink to the bottom and drown Japan still hunts whales whales and other ocean creatures off the Alaskan coast show toxic levels of mercury and other crap and everywhere countless beautiful creatures are poached for their meat fur ivory and supposed medicinal properties. oh yeah the continued distruction of the rain forest. I could make this go on forever. Humans have brought this planet to the brink. A lot has been done but we can’t stop now. I DO NOT agree with making whales or any other animal do stupid mindless tricks but before we release them we have to ask What are we releasing them into??

  • carl says:

    Well said Tia.

  • Jessica Osorio says:

    FREE TILLY!!!! Orcas don’t deserve to be living in a tank. Any kind of animal deserves to live in hisher natural environment.

  • stephanie says:

    YOU can shut it down! Don’t go. Tell your family not to go. Tell your friends not to go. Tell your friends friends not to go. If no one goes they make no money if they make no money they have to close up Stop complaining and DO SOMETHING TO HELPotherwise you are no better than them.

  • Sarah Josselyn says:

    Callan Reinke let’s not make this issue about abortion and focus on the debate at hand. But if you want a realistic view of what consequences may face an unwanted child think about the resources it takes to raise one money food shelter education clothing etc. Without those things you have a living being essentially imprisoned in a situation he or she has no control over. If the mother is not in the position to provide these things don’t force her to have it and subject the child to the type of life you feel necessary to spare an animal from. But back on topic I do think these facilities should be shut down. They always make me so depressed…

  • Marcia says:

    What kind of education is this for childrenteaching them that it is okay to capture wild animals and make them spend their lives in senseless “entertainment.” Besides do we know the whale was demonstrating aggression? Maybe this is how 12000 pound animals play.

  • Thefutureisvegan says:

    It’s not “education” to put on a show of forced behaviour for the public. It’s not “conservation” to force an animal which was stolen from its home in the wild into a breeding program to create more incarcerated commodified Orcas. This is an attempt to make a buck and nothing more. The “trainers” and “keepers” of this unfortunate Orca don’t really love animals nor do they respect our magnificent biosphere or at least they haven’t joined the dots. These hellish prisons should be shut down.

  • Jerry Z Chang says:

    Why don’t we lock up trainers like those Killer Whales and then allow the trainers to perform the circus acts for us audiences. While we are at it make sure we keep the trainers in the same tight space + feeding them a few spoons of food for each act they perform etc…..

  • carmen rodriguez says:

    there are so many ways to educate our children about sea life booksdocumentaries boat trips. when any animal in captivity lashes out or even when you see a polar bear pacing at a zoo it is a sign that it is not in it’s natural environment and cannot behave naturally or abiding by it’s instinct. tilikum is a victim and the trainer is also a victim.

  • James says:

    Matt mentioned “The Cove”. I’d like to mention “Lolita Slave To Entertainment”. Please search it out and view it if you are unfamiliar with the plight of this amazing creature. It is truly exciting to see such change happening before our eyes. We WILL get across to those who know not!

  • ChewyBees says:

    Circus and Bread. That is the only formula necessary for Pharoah and Ceasar to keep us all happy. Do you really think the Corporate Lords care about a fish yes I know it’s a mammal but do they? If they could get away with it and they may soon the way things are going they would march you around naked performing tricks. Circus Zoo Amusment Park all are a horrible system of caged existence that needs to be abolished. A species would be better off extinct than caged for the profit of the greedy soulless.

  • Shivam Gandhi says:

    Shut down sea world. They are a bunch of abusive banshees who hurt animals. I dont care if they need to make money just shut them down. Go to to support our struggle in saving animals.

  • Carla says:

    These places should all be shut down.. when the hell are they going to wake up?????

  • BullyDawg says:

    I have to say something to those who say the whales don’t know freedom that they wouldn’t survive in the wild that they were born captive and that they “need” us to care for them… …that’s exactly what they said about slaves. That because they were born in captivity that they wouldn’t know any different or any better. That they couldn’t survive on their own and “needed” their masters to care for them. I challenge anybody to say that just because a black person was born into slavery that they didn’t know what freedom was or yearned for it.

  • rosana says:

    Please free them all!! stop the circus! hate people!

  • julius says:

    In SPain two months ago a trainer was killed by a Seaworld killer whale n Loro Parque Tenerife it has been covered most of the truth on Alexis MArtin death because there were no witnesses that werent loro parqus employess…..Love for both but truth and justice too.

  • Mark Patulot says:

    Tilika must be freed. The people involved on these circus is much more scarier. Love the animals not for their tricks guys.



  • Cathie says:

    I think Seaworld should be shut downtotally agree with this. Not really sure how I feel about letting Tilly gothis may be way cruel in and of itself since the whale has been fed daily by humans for so many years. Not sure what the right answers are here. Thanks Cathie

  • Andre Inglis says:

    SeaWorld needs to be shut down. A place like that has so much blood on their hands that there is no other way.

  • Al Jackson says:

    Free all animals and put the people who’ve kept them captive in cells and make them do tricks for their food. I would pay to watch that.

  • Amanda lucia says:

    It needs to be shut down!

  • Wendy says:

    I totally believe the same as everyone else on here is saying. No way should these beautiful creatures of the sea been confined to an oversized fish bowl. That is the same as confining a human to their home for eternity. I think that enough damage has been done by animals in entertainment and consider it to be abuse. Free them all and the heck with Sea World and other place that are holding these beauties.

  • cris says:

    Oh gosh i love Matt Damon. He seems so down to earth and so cute. I hope the fact that celebrities are talking about this speeds up the process and Tilly 3 gains its freedom back soon.

  • Steve says:

    I don’t know if it’s necessary to shut SeaWorld down as they could provide an educational experience without the use of performing animals and thereby lower the cost of admission.

  • ValNYC says:

    Lovely Damon and hopefully others will join. SHUT SEA WORLD DOWN! Thats all my voice has to say. Hope it will be heard. Hope is the last to die.

  • Timothy Verret says:

    Matt Damon is AWESOME!!! I hope he wins Best Supporting Actor this year though I know he won’t

  • Susan says:

    Interesting comment musi “…we must speak for those creatures that can’t.” I agree. Wild animals should be in the wild. Sea World is a moneymaking operation that does its best to be humane but the premise itself is not humane. But we live in a society that fails the innocent who can’t speak for themselves on the most basic level by allowing abortion for the convenience of mothers abortion rarely occurs because a mother’s life is at risk but rather is always about fear of some kind. As long as we see some life as expendable and fail to value human life animals will contine to be mistreated as well.

  • Callan Reinke says:

    Using animals for entertainment is cruel. Those tricks are absolutely ridiculous.

  • Olivia says:

    “The Cove” and “Lolita Slave to Entertainment” are great films that tell what is really happening at SeaWorld and how they use ‘education’ and ‘science’ to justify their slavery I saw a trainer on the Today show this morning and it made me so angry saying it would be IMPOSSIBLE to release these animals they sea world ruined the whales chances for a normal life by breeding and raising animals in captivity the LEAST they could do was send them to a sanctuary where the whales can have the safety of food since they were never tought to hunt but they also can have a HUGE ocean area. What a waste of an animal Sea World ‘s Slavery just as much as the Circus’s Slavery. To see this incredibly intelligent animal confined to a bath tub for the rest of its life while doing stupid tricks brings tears to my eyes RIP Dawn sadly there will be more deaths if Sea World does not close down!

  • Karen says:

    Wouldn’t it be more exciting and more educational to spot them in the wild?? I don’t think most people even consider the consequences of keeping ocean mammals in captivity like this. Now that it has come to the general public’s attention maybe changes can be made.

  • Richard Montalvo says:

    Yes Tilika needs to be freed!!! Just like the whale where I live Lolita. She is in the Miami Seaquarium. She is the longest Orca in captivity and is being held in a tank too small and old for her size. They did a documentary on her situation called Lolita Slave to Entertainment. Here is a link to watch the trailer…..

  • Josephine Dowd says:

    Perhaps we least understand ocean mammals. Orcas whales dolphins and other ocean life belong in the wild. They are natural hunters we cannot mistake their complex intelligence for a friendly banner.

  • Theresa Pisani says:

    I think it’s horrible that these huge extremely intelligent beings are kept in a tank! They are in prison with nothing to do with their intellect no choices to make about their own lives and no excitement no reason to live. It makes me sick. They need to go back to the ocean their home.

  • Vickie DeLuna says:

    If everyone would see the documentary “the cove” then it would be clear what are the intentions and what price we are willing to pay. No animal or mamamal should be imprisoned or killed for any entertainment purpose. We must speak for those creatures that can’t.

  • musi says:

    FREE TILIKUM!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • notagmplayer says:

    I think all animals should be banned for entertainment purposes. Release them all back to there envoirment.

  • stacia says:

    they are only doing what they do naturally in the wild. free them! why make them suffer longer under human expectation and imprisonment! they are wild animals!

  • Jenn Everson says:

    It just irks me to no end that people think animals are here for us to use for our pleasure. Nice to know that Matt Damon is on the same page!

  • Chris Franklin says:

    Please add my name to FREEING TILIKUM! It’s jut another sad view of humanity where SeaWorld’s desire for profit outweighs the basic needs and desires of the creatures they supposedly protect!

  • Don says:

    We need to pass a law like Ecuador has banning the use of all animals in entertainment.

  • lulu says:

    It seems every time that man opens his mouth I love him a little bit more.

  • Hayley says:

    Sea World is hiding behind this whole “science” cover. What science is there with whales jumping out of the water and splashing people? Where is the science in having them fetch objects out of the water? If we want to learn about these animals great. But haven’t we learned everything? You can’t learn about animals in a faux habitat. Your results would be flawed. Study them in the wild for valid and reliable data. Sea World needs to let it animals be free. Let them be animals.

  • Maya Pemmer says:

    Orcas a not for captivity. By the way noone of the animals are for captivity. Every orcas should be freed from this forced entertainment. They need their family…why people don’t understand this??? shame on the humanity again…

  • viviana says:

    If even when to only have locked up wild animal for the enjoy of the people! because they do not put the same people to distract to the children and people! like clowns ect thus does not have to condemn the poor animalitos to suffer locked up outside their natural environment! furthermore he is cruel

  • Alexandria says:

    Free Tilly!

  • Megan says:

    Mmmmm Matt Damon! You’re right PETA! The only Ocean performance I want to see is Matt Damons!

  • Tia says:

    YES!! Free them all…they belong in the ocean not in a tank! If you were a 6 ton animal that’s 12000 pounds would you know when you were playing too rough with a 100 pound human? And even if he did rage against her…ummmmm it’s a wild animal. Hello?

  • Kathleen Cain says:

    The education that would come to our children in seeing the restoration of this majestic wonder is priceless. I am finding that there are some who believe that because those who are focused on the freedom of the mammals are uncaring about the trainer. The opposite is true! If our voices had been heard and the whales freed before this “accident” occurred Dawn may have been alive today. How many more lives will money buy?