Alan Cumming Offers $10,000 Reward for Info on Missing Former Co-Star Chimpanzee | Playbill

Film & TV News Alan Cumming Offers $10,000 Reward for Info on Missing Former Co-Star Chimpanzee

The Cabaret Tony winner appeared with Tonka in the 1997 film Buddy.

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Alan Cumming

Cabaret Tony winner Alan Cumming is offering a $10,000 reward for any information regarding the whereabouts of Tonka, a chimpanzee that co-starred with Cumming in the 1997 film Buddy. Cumming's offer matches the amount being offered by PETA, bringing the total potential reward to $20,000.

Tonka's disappearance is the latest development in a dispute between the animal rights organization and the now-defunct Missouri Primate Foundation, which used to breed chimpanzees and sell them to private owners or rent them out to movies and parties. PETA sued the organization over the animals' living conditions and secured the rights to move Tonka and six other chimpanzees to an accredited sanctuary, but when PETA arrived to facilitate the transfer in July, 2021, Tonka was missing. MPF's owner reportedly explained that Tonka had died, but PETA has reason to believe this is not so.

"My character had many scenes with him, and we developed a very close camaraderie during the months when we filmed," shared Cumming in a letter to MPF urging Tonka's transfer to a sanctuary written prior to the chimpanzee's disappearance. "By the end of the shoot, his trainers let him groom me. It was a special friendship—one I'll always treasure."

“If you know where Tonka may have been shipped, sold, or hidden away, PETA wants to hear from you,” says PETA Foundation Deputy General Counsel for Captive Animal Law Enforcement Brittany Peet. “If he is still alive, Tonka deserves to live out the rest of his days surrounded by chimpanzee friends in a lush sanctuary as ordered by the court, and there may be someone out there who can help PETA get him there.”

Anyone with information about Tonka's whereabouts is invited to share the information via a form at PETA.org.

Take a Look at Alan Cumming's Broadway Career

 
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