Walrus and the Whistleblower, The

Documentary | 88 Minutes

Calgary: Friday, August 28, 2020
Canada: Friday, August 28, 2020


Marineland has been a Niagara Falls tourist magnet since 1961, a place where families flocked to see dolphins, whales and walruses perform with their human trainers. For more than a decade, Philip Demers worked there as a trainer; when he developed a unique bond with a walrus named Smooshi, their relationship wooed the public and garnered international media attention. But in 2012, Demers quit his job and along with several former co-workers broke his silence, alleging that the captive animals were suffering from negligent treatment and unhealthy living conditions. Their firsthand accounts provided key evidence for animal rights activists who lobbied to shut Marineland down. After turning on his employer and demanding protection for the animals, Demers was served with a lawsuit, but saw his social media following explode. Highlighting the consequences of whistleblowing and the politics of enacting lasting change, this timely tale poignantly tallies the cost of speaking your truth in an age of instant communication.


Cast & Crew

Movie Cast
  • Phil Demers
  • Doug Draper
  • John Holer
  • Jimmy Kimmel
Movie Crew
  • Nathalie Bibeau
  • Nathalie Bibeau

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