Whale Wars begins filming next season amid controversyDecember 20th, 2008 by cdunagan
Filming of the second season of “Whale Wars” is under way, and today Paul Watson, leader of Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, claimed to have the Japanese whaling fleet on the run.
I’d like to ask a question of all you readers of Water Ways. Would you like me to provide occasional updates on Sea Shepherd’s controversial tactics, or do believe it is wrong to give this organization the extensive publicity it is already receiving?
I’m open to arguments on both sides.
Meanwhile, let me tell you what has been happening with Sea Shepherd and its television series “Whale Wars,” which completed its first season on Animal Planet this week and is going into reruns.
A news release issued today quotes Watson:
“It does not get more real than this. While people are sitting in their living rooms watching our campaign against the whalers that took place last season, we are at the same time in the icy hostile seas of Antarctica engaged with the whalers this season. There is an Animal Planet crew on board and the cameras are rolling for season two of Whale Wars.”
Yesterday, Watson reported that Sea Shepherd’s boat, the Steve Irwin, caught up with the harpoon ship Yushin Maru #2. The small Delta boat was launched with the idea of pelting the ship with stinky butter bombs, but it had to be called back because of high winds and rough sea conditions.
Watch the video by Sea Shepherd.
The Yushin Marin #2 was a ship that members of Sea Shepherd boarded last year, one of the dramatic moments in Season One of “Whale Wars.” Because of that controversial action and other life-risking incidents, the series quickly picked up an audience and was a big winner for Animal Planet, according to Variety magazine, which reports on show business.
This year the Japanese ship reportedly has installed a net over its side to prevent any further boardings.
Meanwhile, producers of the program have invited Japanese officials to participate in the second season, perhaps to offer a more balanced view of events.
As you may have heard, actress Daryl Hannah has joined the crew for this year’s campaign in the Antarctic. Hannah, best known for her mermaid role in the movie “Splash,” is a longtime supporter of environmental causes. She has been forcibly removed from more than one protest demonstration, and she runs a personal Web site that covers a lot of environmental issues. I wonder what her presence will add to the show.
It seems Sea Shepherd is getting wrapped up in show business as well as continuing controversy and criticism — including Watson’s claim of being shot against denials by the Japanese. Watson apparently believes all the publicity will help stop the whaling, and now he’s getting more attention than anytime in the last 30 years.
I don’t know where things will go from here, but I can’t help but watch.