Bat conservationist calls for boycott of Stallone film
DAVAO CITY—Davao’s internationally recognized bat conservationist Norma Monfort will step up her campaign to boycott the Sylvester Stallone starrer The Expendables 2 during the Kadayawan festival on August 17.
The movie will be shown here starting that date.
The boycott is in sympathy with bat conservationists in Bulgaria for the destruction of a large number of bat population at Devetashka bat cave in Lovech, where the film was shot, Monfort said.
Although the producers of the film, which also stars Hollywood bigwigs Bruce Willis, Jean Claude Van Damme, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jason Statham and Jet Li, had already been fined by Bulgarian authorities, Monfort said it was not enough to pay for the destruction that the shooting caused on Bulgaria’s bat population.
She said the Devetashka cave was home to 15 protected species of hibernating bats, or about half of the total bat population in Bulgaria.
“There was a marked decline in the bat population after the shooting. They cannot just kill the bats without paying for it,” she told reporters here Monday.
Monfort said during the Kadawayan parade, she will urge residents here—through the use of bullhorns and streamers—to skip the movie.
“Now that the film is showing here, we will walk the talk, we will wave streamers and march during the Kadayawan festivities to deliver our message,” Monfort said.
In trying to illustrate the importance of bats, Monfort said the often misunderstood creatures are considered great pollinators of plants.
“Without the bats, we cannot be celebrating Kadayawan,” she said. Kadayawan is the indigenous people’s thanksgiving festival.
Monfort, named conservation hero for 2011 by the Disney Worldwide Conservation Fund Park, owns the Monfort Park on the Island Garden City of Samal in Davao del Norte, which hosts the world’s largest concentration of Geoffrey’s Rosette fruit bats. The Monfort bat caves on Samal Island host an estimated 1.8 million bats.—Germelina Lacorte, Ayan Mellejor and Judy Quiros
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