Celebrities who have visited ‘Tiger King’ zoos


The pop culture loving community was introduced to Joe Exotic in 2024 thanks to Netflix’s viral documentary series, Tiger King . The dazzling real-life story involved big cats, drug use, polygamous gay marriages, an attack that cost an employee’s arm, a missing husband who could have been fed with caged creatures, and a murder-for-hire plot that ended. with a prison sentence of 22 years. And that’s just a quick recap of the story that was almost too sensational to believe!

It also happened that not only was a zoo featured, but three very different animal parks. Joe Exotic (whose real name is Joe Maldonado-Passage) was the owner of what is now known as The Greater Wynnewood Exotic Animal Park, a zoo that barely managed to survive and used questionable methods to stay in business. There was also Doc Antle’s much more successful Myrtle Beach Safari, as well as Carole Baskin’s popular Big Cat Rescue animal sanctuary. Each boasted a crew of genuine characters (humans and animals) and more than a few dubious problems, as well as captivating controversies.

While that’s enough for you to want to watch the documentary series if you haven’t turned yourself in yet (or if that makes you want to dive back into the lion’s den), what might make you even more interested is the fact that there are plenty of celebrities, Including the following actors, musicians, and athletes, have visited the zoos from Tiger King .

Shaquille O’Neal distanced himself from Joe Exotic

Following the launch of Netflix Tiger King Shaquille O’Neal was one of the first celebrities to be found to have a connection to controversial animal parks, thanks to the fact that he actually appeared in the documentary series. The former NBA player discussed his experience on The Great Podcast with Shaq on March 25, 2024, revealing that he had been to the zoo owned by Joe Exotic (or, as the athlete called it, “Exotic Joe”) “an couple [of] times, “and” they left some donations for the tiger food “, while taking the opportunity to hang out with Exotic and the big cats, which you can see for yourself thanks to JoeExoticTV .

While O’Neal was totally willing to acknowledge the fact that he likes to visit zoos, he defended his time in the grim Exotic park while distancing himself from the outrageous figure in a follow-up podcast on April 1, 2024. When I found out I was doing all that, I walked away from it. I cannot involve my name. « He also added: “Just because I take a picture with you [doesn’t] mean you are my friend.”

Despite the controversy sparked by Shaq’s visits to Exotic Zoo, the sports star also revealed that if he “had time to open a zoo [him] car and run it, [he]” Maybe we’ll see Shaq Exotic in the future?

Miranda Lambert posed for photos with Joe Exotic

Miranda Lambert faced a backlash in April 2024, when she posted photos on Instagram that were shown with Joe Exotic. The country singer can be seen smiling as he poses with the documentary series star and Saff Saffery, the park staff member who (spoiler alert) lost his arm during a tiger attack, as well as one of the ex-husbands by Exotic, John Finlay. “Here’s a little keepsake for you guys,” Lambert captioned his post as he added a hashtag that read “#WayTooPrettyForPrison,” referring to Exotic’s sentence behind bars.

Although Lambert may have thought it was a good idea to partner with the shocking show, fans were not impressed. The star, who “is a well-known animal advocate and founder of the MuttNation Foundation,” according to La bota , took to Twitter to explain the truth behind the photos.

“Background: During Hurricane Harvey, the MuttNation team went to Houston to help relocate existing shelter dogs to free up separate animal shelter space for their owners,” he wrote. After explaining that “[s] a guy named Joe volunteered his trailer and his staff,” he clarified that he was not a park guest and “didn’t even know he had tigers,” adding that “OBVIOUSLY … he would never tolerate animals They were mistreated “Maybe he should have revealed these facts when he first posted the photos so fans were up to speed on the whole story before the reaction broke out.

Post Malone settled in with one of Joe Exotic’s baby tigers

If you follow Post Malone on Instagram, then you probably realize the fact that he loves to date all kinds of creatures. In the past, he posed with a super cold kangaroo, licked by a horse, befriended a cheetah and a giraffe, and held a monkey wearing gold chains. While the animal-filled visits took place at the Lion & Safari Park in South Africa, and another consisted of meeting his monkey friend at the Zoological Wildlife Foundation’s Nature Reserve, Malone also spent time at the Joe Exotic Zoo.

The star visited Instagram on June 15, 2018 to share a photo of himself holding a small tiger cub, while the Tiger King Park account republished the photo with the caption: “@postmalone it was good to have you already your team in our zoo ». «

While the image certainly looks cute, Exotic was notoriously known for raising baby tigers and taking them from their mothers to be used as tourist attractions. National Geographic analyzed the problematic (and heartbreaking) problem, noting that “[i] Interaction with humans is… stressful for puppies. They are very young; they are not with their mother; and they are passing in the midst of bright lights, noise and people who, to themselves, could be predators. Frankly, this situation is not so nice when you realize what is really happening.

Beyoncé came out with a chimpanzee and some tigers

Beyoncé, who was the voice of a big cat in the 2019 Rey Leon , is another famous figure who apparently likes to spend time with cute (albeit occasionally dangerous) animals that would naturally be found living in the wild. But when she wanted to go a little crazy herself, she didn’t head to Joe Exotic’s Greater Wynnewood Exotic Animal Park. Instead, the “Run the World” singer visited Doc Antle’s Myrtle Beach Safari. The park’s Instagram account shared photos of Bey in August 2019 with the caption, ‘Go back to when @beyonce visited us! »

From the photo collection, it seems clear that Beyoncé was enjoying the opportunity to hang out with a chimpanzee whose name is apparently Vali. It may or may not have been a coincidence that the singer wore a jacket reminiscent of one worn by Michael Jackson, famous for owning his own chimpanzee, which was for Bubbles. Beyoncé also offered Vali a snack by holding something between her teeth so that the two ended up mouth to mouth.

While that would have been an exciting visit in itself, Beyoncé then spent time with a normal tiger cub and a young white tiger, but when she fed the predator, she chose to do so with a bottle of milk instead of coming face to face. with its fierce fangs, which is totally understandable.

Bobby Flay also appeared on Myrtle Beach Safari

Bobby Flay is known for being one of the most famous celebrity chefs on the Food Network, while he may recognize actress Stephanie March as Assistant District Attorney Alexandra Cabot from his days on. Law and order: Special victims unit . What you may not have known is the fact that the two stars were married from 2005 until their separation in 2015. While Flay and March surely did a lot of interesting things together while husband and wife, they apparently spent a particular day in Myrtle Beach. Safari, owned by Doc Antle (or Dr. Bhagavan Antle, as he calls himself).

The owner of the animal park visited Instagram on May 8, 2019 to share a photo of the celebrity couple sitting with a young chimpanzee. “When baby Vali meets with @bobbyflay at @MyrtleBeachSafari to gain the support of the #RareSpeciesFund,” he wrote, referring to his nonprofit organization that “was established to provide funding for critical international wildlife conservation programs, thus complementing the educational messages and field investigations of TIGERS [which stands for The Institute for Greatly Endangered and Rare Species], «which is apparently as controversial as anything else related to the tiger king docu series.

Floyd Mayweather posed with a cheetah

Floyd Mayweather is another star who likes to interact with captivating creatures outside of her professional life. Just look at the photo of him feeding a flamingo on a beach in Aruba and try not to be jealous (you can’t do it). “They say I live a pretty interesting life,” the image captioned, and that certainly seems to be an accurate statement. You will probably agree when you discover that you also spent time at the Doc Antle animal park.

On February 19, 2019, Antle shared a photo of himself on Instagram showing the now famous star of the Netflix documentary series chatting with the boxer while the owner of the Myrtle Beach Safari cradled a baby tiger in his arms. “@Floydmayweather the champion and me talking about tigers @myrtlebeachsafari #savethetigersavetheworld”, he wrote next to the photo.

While Mayweather did not share that photo on his own, he did post a picture of himself in the park kneeling behind a rather carefree looking cheetah. And frankly, considering that he’s in the presence of a wild predator, Mayweather looks quite relaxed. However, we are sure it was ready to take off in an instant if that cat became too loud.

The Undertaker seems to have met Hercules the liger

What the hell is a liger? Well, if you have seen Dynamite Napoleon , then you will know that it is an animal that had a lion father and one that was a tiger, which makes it a mixture of both, hence the name of hare. Doc Antle apparently has one of these creatures, a huge one named Hercules. The winner of three Guinness World Records , the giant cat “lives up to its name, weighing in at over 900 pounds and 11 feet tall when standing on its hind legs,” according to the Myrtle Beach Safari website. This intimidating animal appears to be who he met The Undertaker (whose real name is Mark Calaway) during the professional wrestler’s visit to one of the animal parks seen on Netflix Tiger King .

Thank you so much to @docantle and @myrtlebeachsafari for showing us a great time today! »WWE and World Heavyweight Champion captioned an Instagram post from March 14, 2024. It also included a collection of photos showing him holding a baby tiger and feeding a bottle of milk to the thirsty cat.

The star, who made his visit with his wife and fellow WWE star Michelle McCool, also dated many monkeys and posed with Doc Antle and his son, Kody Antle, who wore a loin and looked small compared to both. . the fighter and the giant cat that looks more like an ancient saber-toothed tiger than anything that needs to roam today.

Odell Beckham Jr.’s visit to Doc Antle Park upset PETA

NFL star Odell Beckham Jr. may be known for his skills while playing on the field, but on January 6, 2019, he shared a video of himself on Instagram that saw him playing with animals at Doc’s zoo. Antle. The athlete spent time petting both a tiger and a cheetah, while also tossing a soccer ball with a chimpanzee. While the clips may have seemed fun, many people left comments expressing disappointment by the sports star for putting himself in a dangerous position while also pointing out that the creatures featured would be better off in the wild. And they weren’t the only ones annoyed by what they saw.

“These sensitive and highly abused animals belong to their families in the wild, they are not promoted as props by shameless zoos,” PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) said in a statement on its website. While calling the video a “cheap publicity stunt,” the organization added that they are “confident that Odell Beckham Jr. had no idea that the seedy safari park where this young chimpanzee is kept has a long history of violating the law. federal »and» urg [ed] all, including Beckham… to avoid cruel facilities that exploit animals «.

Beckham didn’t answer the call and still has the post on his Instagram page, so he doesn’t seem to regret his visit to the controversial animal park.

Logan Paul, Lil Duval and Desiigner have a message to give

Logan Paul not only hung out with a cheetah, a chimpanzee, and other cute creatures at the Doc Antle Zoo, but he also ended up in a pool with one of the huge white tigers from the animal park. Myrtle Beach Safari used Instagram to share a video of the YouTube star on February 4, 2024, writing: “@loganpaul helped us spread the message … Save the tiger, save the world.” In the clip, Paul holds one of the cat’s huge paws as he helps deliver the same short message alongside Doc’s son Kody Antle.

While the controversial star seemed excited by the experience, the tiger honestly seems less impressed (although, we must ask ourselves, can a tiger seem impressed?). Perhaps the potentially ferocious feline was more interested in the other two celebrities who participated in the same effort that saw Paul dive with an animal.

Comedian Lil Duval also jumped into the water with a tiger in August 2019, even stroking the giant cat while relaying the same message, ‘save the tiger, save the world.’ Apparently, Desiigner was not in the mood to put on his swimsuit when he visited the Doc Antle Zoo in February 2024, although he fed two white tigers milk, while one even tapped him gently while handing him the expected line. Well, we hope he was kind for the rapper’s sake.

Will Kim Kardashian visit Carole Baskin’s animal sanctuary?

Those who have seen Tiger King Learn the story of Carole Baskin and her second husband, Jack “Don” Lewis. After the man disappeared, many suspected that Carole had committed murder and (eek!) Fed his remains to his tigers. The owner of the animal sanctuary has always maintained his innocence and continues to do so after the release of the documentary series as interest in the situation has been renewed. Hillsborough County Sheriff Chad Chronister even asked for new leads at the same time as telling TMZ that “he is convinced that a person could NOT have committed the 1997 murder”, adding that “someone must have helped and someone received a payment “.

Suspicion about the situation has become so viral that Kim Kardashian took to Twitter asking millions of followers what they think about Don’s disappearance. This, in turn, prompted Carole’s current husband, Howard Baskin, to record a YouTube video not only to address the circumstance, but also to communicate with Keeping up with the reality TV star Kardashians .

“I doubt Kim will see this video, but if I were to spend an hour with Carole, I know I would have her answer and I know what it would be,” he said. “And of course we would welcome your visit if you wanted to.” Considering that Kardashian is working to become a lawyer, this may be a case that you should investigate.