Two Thumbs Down! PETA Calls ‘Cut’ on ‘Fabelmans’ Monkey Scenes

For Immediate Release:
September 14, 2022

Moira Colley 202-483-7382

Los Angeles – Below, please find a statement from primatologist and PETA Foundation Director of Captive Animal Welfare Debbie Metzler in response to Steven Spielberg’s use of a monkey in his upcoming movie The Fabelmans:

Steven Spielberg was imaginative enough to create a lovable alien in 1982 and followed that up with herds of realistic computer-generated dinosaurs in the 1990s, so what’s his excuse for dragging a real monkey onto a film set in 2022? His mother might have “needed a laugh,” but PETA’s not laughing—and neither should anyone else who cares about animals. This monkey scene is an endorsement of the cruel animal-training industry and an advertisement for the seedy wildlife “pet” trade, and PETA is calling on Spielberg to live up to his legacy as an industry leader by leaving this scene on the cutting room floor.

PETA notes that monkeys used as “pets” or for film and television productions are typically separated from their mothers at a young age. Trainers often use violence behind the scenes to force wild animals to perform on cue.

PETA urges anyone who witnesses animals being used for film or television productions to report it at or call the whistleblower hotline at 323-210-2233.

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to use for entertainment or abuse in any other way”—opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview. For more information, please visit or follow the group on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.

For Media: Contact PETA's
Media Response Team.


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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“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