Silver Screen Icon Dies aged 80, or so we think?….
Of course, I’m talking about Cheetah, that loveable hairy
sidekick that belonged to Tarzan in the 1930s.
But while Cheetah’s death is reported around the world as fact,
doubts and dubious thoughts are starting to emerge about whether
the chimpanzee in question had ever appeared on our screens?
‘’Chimps kept in captivity seldom live beyond the age of 45!!’’
AND in the past animal trainers have claimed that their chimp
starred in the films with the loin clothed and rugged Johnny Weissmuller.
There doesn’t appear to be any verification that this chimp was
ever in any movies or television shows.
He might even just be an urban legend?
I’m sure someone will find this chimp actors union card
with his REAL birthdate and stats and not what Hollywood would
like us to believe will come to light.
But for now...
AWAY with the speculation and doubt!!!
This greying primate retired in the rather comfortable Suncoast Sanctuary.
The sanctuary claimed he arrived there in 1960 and was donated by Weissmuller’s estate.
A spokesman said the much-loved ape died from kidney failure
on Christmas Eve.
Cheetah made his first appearance in Tarzan and His Mate in
1934 and later went on to appear in a dozen films swinging and
jumping around the jungle.
Cheetah had loved to finger paint and watch football as he grew older.
Some of his artwork is dubbed “ap-stract” and has been sold to Tarzan fans near and far.
Ron Priest, who looked after Cheetah since the 1960s, said:
“When he didn’t like somebody or something that was going on,
he would pick up some poop and throw it at them.
He could get you at 30 feet with bars in between.”
EVERYONE!! loves a poop flinging monkey!
According to film experts, 10 chimps starred in the Tarzan movies
and a number of owners have claimed to have their chimps
recognised as the genuine star.
I’m sure we’ll be mourning yet again in the next few years when the next Cheetah takes his final hoot.
But for now, let’s all raise our glasses to this pesky primate, who I’m sure will follow the legends of Jim Morrison and Elvis, and we will be being served at the drive through recognising that chimpy grin but just not being able to place where we’ve seen it before… Or running a ranch for performing homo-sapiens and appearing on Celebrity Rehab.
R.I.P Cheetah. 1931-2011 may you return to the jungle.
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