I first heard about Sarah because of her participation in an undercover investigation at Amazing Animal Actors to document abuse towards chimpanzees used in the entertainment industry. She was able to tell me all kinds of stories about the remarkable chimpanzees she worked with during that investigation as well as her observations of the cruel methods that were used to train them.
We met Sarah at her very cute house in Portland, Oregon on a sunny day. That morning, she had received a notice that said the power would likely be shut off at some point during the day for some random neighborhood maintenance, so we decided not to use our lighting equipment, as we knew if the power went out mid-interview, the lighting difference would be too great to fix in post. As it turned out, her power never went out, but as a result the lighting in her interview isn’t great. Sarah had this charming little dog named Toby that liked barking and being near her, and so he spent part of our interview on my lap where he could be near her. I was struck by how articulate and sweet Sarah was, and discovered while talking with her that she has had a passion and interest in working with chimpanzees since the 4th grade.
You can find all of Sarah Baeckler’s interviews here. This collection may increase as I upload more content to this site.