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Chimpanzees in Entertainment

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Geico Insurance

Feb 7, 2016
Geico Insurance

In this ad for the insurance company Geico, a chimpanzee "actor" makes a brief appearance.  The young chimpanzee shakes his head at the human actors portraying Tarzan and Jane.  The advertisement was not shown during the 2016 Super Bowl television programming but it's online release coincided with the event.


Vodaphone

Jan 2016
Vodaphone

A German commerical for Vodaphone features Vali and Sugriva, two chimpanzees that live at Mrytle Beach Safari.  The pair has been used for other entertainment features in the past.  Here, they are portrayed as interacting with tablets with a young woman on the couch.  


Frontier Airlines

Nov 30, 2015
Frontier Airlines

Frontier Airlines is advertising their low Cyber Monday fares  by calling the ad "It's Cyber Monkey!". This advertisment consists of a chimpanzee grinning while wearing a collared shirt, tie, santa hat, and holding an iPad/tablet as if the chimp was happy to be purchasing a low airfare online on Cyber Monday.


Blue-Emu Anti-itch Cream

Jun 2015
Blue-Emu Anti-itch Cream

Blue-Emu, an anti-itch skin cream brand, aired a commercial featuring a chimpanzee dressed in buisiness attire, cleaning out a woman's medicine cabinet. The young chimp in the ad is known as Chance and is one of several chimpanzee "entertainers" owned by the Rosaire family.

Blue-Emu has confirmed that as of June 15, 2015, the ad will be pulled and no longer be aired.


McDonald's

Mar 2015
McDonald's

In March 2015, American fast food company McDonald's released a commerical advertising their spicy chicken sandwich, which featured a chimpanzee "actor". In the commerical, two men eating the sandwich appear to be in front of a chimpanzee habitat at a zoo, both panting due to the spice of the sandwiches. A chimpanzee in the habitat calls in their direction, with the well-recognized chimp vocalization referred to as a "pant-hoot" call. The chimp, who is known as Suzy, was provided for the advertisement by Steve Martin's Working Wildlife.

As of March 26, 2015, McDonald's Corporation has confirmed the advertisement is no longer running and and will not be considered for use in the future.


MTV

Feb 24, 2015
MTV

MTV, a network used for music and entertainment,  released a commercial featuring a  young chimpanzee and orangatang taking selfies. The commercial promotes the popluar craze of selfies while using the hashtag: #smile. The chimpanzees featured in this commercial are owned by Doc Antle.


CrossCountry

2015
CrossCountry

CrossCountry is a train operating company in the UK, owned by Arriva UK Trains, offering budget train travel throughout Britain. The company launched an ad campaign for discounted student fares, which featured a chimpanzee in clothing atop a man's shoulders. The ad stated that studentds should "buy a monkey" with the money they save on travel, implying that primates are suitable pets and condoning their purchase.

After considering the implications of their message, the company decided to pull the advertisement and it will not be run in the future.


Wright Vision Center

Sep 19, 2014
Wright Vision Center

Wright Vision Center, an ophthalmology and optometry center in Rapid City, South Dakota, aired a commercial featuring a young chimpanzee "actor" wearing clothing and glasses, advertising their surgical vision correction services.


A Million Ways to Die in the West

May 2014
A Million Ways to Die in the West

In an advertisement for the 2014 comedy movie "A Million Ways to Die in the West", a number of primates were used to "play" the parts of famous actors. The adversitement states that the real actors were unavailable for the filming of the commerical and their roles are therefore temporarily being played by monkeys. One of the so-called "monkeys" is a chimpanzee in a dress, used for the part of actress Charlize Theron. The chimp, as well as a capuchin monkey, macaque monkey, and mandrill were provided for the ad by Steve Martin's Working Wildlife.


Great Clips

Dec 19, 2012
Great Clips

Great Clips hair salon, whose franchise is found across the US and Canada, aired a commercial in December 2012, advertising their clip notes service. The ad features Billy, a chimpanzee "actor" owned by Steve Martin of Steve Martin's Working Wildlife. In the ad, he is referred to as "monkey" and drives a small car to deliver a note to a group of golfers. Billy has appeared in several advertisements, both on TV and online, including those for Career Builder, Rise of the Planet of the Apes and A&E's Storage Wars, as well as a Steven Tyler music video.

After pressure from animal welfare organizations and advocates, Great Clips has decided it will be pulling the advertisement (date not yet confirmed) and has now pledged not to use great apes in any future ad campaigns. (see list of pledged non-users).