Animals and wildlife remain important aspects of the exoticization of Malaya in Hollywood’s films. In our film screening series, we have seen many films which used animals to enhance the wild and foreign image of Malaya (Bring ‘Em Back Alive, Tiger Fangs, the upcoming Jungle Princess and East of Borneo)
Within the limits of Hollywood there are 30-odd animal rental companies which house collectively 238 lions, 60 tigers, 25 camels, 23 giraffes, hundreds of snakes, and some 8000 other animals that can be hired to make it uncomfortable for human actors and thrilling for movie audiences.
Certainly, these animal actors play an important role in Hollywood films set in other localities. Tarzan, for instance.
However, it is interesting to note how much they were willing to splurge on animals for the Jungle Princess:
Paramount recently ordered a shipment of 300 monkeys from circus quarters in Texas to be used in “Jungle Princess.” Besides transportation and food, they coat the studio $2100 in rentals.
And it’s not just financial expenses to consider, as this article points out. Charles Bickford, star of East of Borneo and East of Java, was involved in a rather unfortunate encounter with a lion while filming the latter.
Enjoy the entirety of the article, detailing the supply animals for Hollywood films, here!