Lily Tomlin’s ‘Ernestine’ Takes on SeaWorld in New PETA Commercial

Comic Character Revived to Urge Tourists to Stay Away From Cruel Marine Park

For Immediate Release:
April 14, 2016

Contact:
Moira Colley 202-483-7382

Los AngelesLily Tomlin has revived her iconic character “Ernestine” as a feisty phone operator fielding complaint calls at SeaWorld, “where everybody has a whale of a time—except for the whales.”

Tomlin filmed the biting spot for PETA—available here—to hit the airwaves in May as the tourist season begins. Scripted by Modern Family writer Alex Herschlag, the satire is set to make a splash as the company struggles to lure back visitors who have stayed away in droves after learning of the abusement park’s cruelty through the documentary Blackfish and nonstop PETA protests.

“Yes, the orcas lose teeth gnawing on the concrete walls,” says Ernestine in the spot. “But if you were a trainer, wouldn’t you prefer to swim with a toothless killer whale?”

Though SeaWorld recently stopped breeding orcas as a result of public pressure, PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to use for entertainment”—is pressuring the park to release the animals to seaside sanctuaries.

Tomlin, who was a double nominee at this year’s Golden Globes, returns for the second season of Netflix’s Grace and Frankie on May 6. PETA especially thanks James Costa and the Archibald Family Foundation for sponsoring the “Ernestine” commercial.

For more information, please visit SeaWorldOfHurt.com or click here.

For Media: Contact PETA's
Media Response Team.

Contact

Get PETA Updates

Stay up to date on the latest vegan trends and get breaking animal rights news delivered straight to your inbox!

By submitting this form, you are agreeing to our collection, storage, use, and disclosure of your personal info in accordance with our privacy policy as well as to receiving e-mails from us.

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind