Throughout my life I’ve met at least three vegetarians who attribute their change from an omnivore diet to a vegetarian one to a single film – Babe. Yes, the film about the pig. One of those people is our very own wrosie, actually! I always find it kind of charming when someone goes vegetarian due to Babe, probably because all of the people I can think of who made the switch did so of their own accord whilst they were still children. I have one friend who immediately went vegetarian when he asked his dad “where’s Babe’s mum going, Dad?” in the scene where Babe’s mother is transported off to the meat processing plant. His dad replied “to make your McDonald’s burgers” and at that point he stopped eating meat at the age of 8.
One of the heroes of Babe though is Farmer Hoggett, played by James Cromwell. He is probably one of my favourite actors, and not because he’s necessarily of the calibre of the likes of De Niro, or because he’s in a variety of classic films (in fact, I can’t really think of that many films or series he has been in), but because he’s just one of those nostalgic faces which remind me of being young. But what makes him cooler is that Babe actually changed his eating habits too, from vegetarian to vegan.
Recently James has lent his calming voice to a new short film by Mercy For Animals called Farm to Fridge (see below). He is the narrator for the 12 minutes of footage, but sadly his soothing voice cannot overcome the distressing footage shown. The film is a short summary of some of the vile processes that go on behind closed doors in the meat industry. The film is enlightening for those who perhaps haven’t seen this kind of stuff before, and is one of the most informative of these kinds of videos, but just to warn you it is also very distressing.
(As a quick sidenote: please view wrosie’s post on the recent laws being discussed around filming in slaughterhouses which could prevent informative footage like this from ever seeing the light of day.)
Whilst this video is disturbing, it displays routine practices in the meat and dairy industries. Try to share this footage around, as this kind of film presents an image of an industry that I’m sure most people wouldn’t want to support.
James Cromwell’s involvement in the film came about through his association with The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS). He was recently interviewed about his participation by Ecorazzi, stating that his involvement was due to the fact that when he saw the footage it made him want to “tear somebody’s eyes out” but he settled for narrating the film instead. Probably the wiser choice in the long run, James.
He was also asked about what his number one green tip is, to which he replied “Go vegan. If you love animals, don’t eat them!” What a dude, now why can’t we get a decent sequel to Babe?