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Carole Baskin says trolls screamed obscenities at her after release of ‘Tiger King’

Carole Baskin, the founder of Big Cat Rescue. Picture: Loren Elliott/Tampa Bay Times via AP

Carole Baskin, the founder of Big Cat Rescue. Picture: Loren Elliott/Tampa Bay Times via AP

Published Dec 23, 2020

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Carole Baskin says trolls online “screamed obscenities” at her for “three months” after the release of the ‘Tiger King’ documentary.

The 59-year-old animal rights activist appeared in the recent Netflix documentary - which told the story of her rival Joe Exotic - because she wanted to expose of the mistreatment of animals by private owners, but was left disappointed when the series instead focused on her “feud” with Joe, which she has previously claimed was blown out of proportion by the show’s producers.

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And now, Carole has claimed the unfair depiction of herself in the documentary led many of the show’s fans to attack her online for months after the series was released.

She said: "The only negative impact has been people that can hide behind an email alias or people who would call me from, like, a burner phone and scream obscenities at me. And that went on for three months after the show came out. But fortunately … people see I am not the villain I was painted to be in ‘Tiger King’.”

Carole also said she worked with the documentary’s producers for five years on the programme, which she believed would follow the same format as ‘Blackfish’, a 2013 film that examined the life of an orca held by SeaWorld and the controversy over captive killer whales.

She added: “What they told us they were doing was a ‘Blackfish’ for big cats. It changed the world in the way people thought about captive orcas and captive dolphins. So we thought this would change the world in the way people thought about tigers and that they would never go to these places to pay to pet the cubs after seeing what we thought we were working on.”

But Carole says the finished product “really missed the mark”.

She told E!’s ‘Daily Pop’: "I'm glad it helped people through the pandemic, but it really missed the mark.”

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‘Tiger King’ followed the story of Joe Exotic, who considered Carole his arch-nemesis as she regularly and publicly accused him of abusing and exploiting wild animals.

The rivalry led Joe to embark on a murder-for-hire plot against Carole, for which he is now serving out a 22-year prison sentence, after being convicted of orchestrating the plot against Baskin, in addition to violating several wildlife laws.

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