And yes, we know, chimpanzees aren't monkeys. That was one of many facts we learned through the process of shooting our latest commercial for the Dodge Tent Event. The commercial features a young chimpanzee (Suzie) in a daredevil suit. She walks up to a detonator, pushes down the lever, and triggers a less-than-huge confetti explosion.
We posted the ad to YouTube, where it garnered thousands of hits and hundreds of comments applauding the commercial for its wit and humor. However, there were a few negative comments about animal cruelty that caught our eye. Next, we received two emails, one from PETA and the other from Chimpanzee Sanctuary Northwest. Both informed us about the poor conditions of working animal "actors." They told us how these animals are usually separated from their mothers at a young age and are usually discarded at seedy roadside attractions after they get too old to act.
We were saddened to learn this, and in the spirit of Dodge we wanted to take action. We decided to take the spot off the air, and we stopped a full-page newspaper spread from running. Dodge is firmly committed to never using great apes in our advertisements again. We released a new commercial. The footage is identical, only this time you won't see Suzie. There's a twist you won't miss. Make no mistake - we're not making light of the issue. We hope our attempt at humor keeps the discussion about animal rights alive ... and so far, it seems to be working. You're here, aren't you? And now, when people ask "Where's the monkey?" we can direct them to resources where they can learn more about animal cruelty prevention.
We are not a company that hides behind issues or brushes them under the rug. We are a company that meets issues head on and moves forward. And we promise to keep doing everything in our power to be one of the most honest and forward-thinking companies out there.
The Dodge Team