Anti-dolphin killing activist and film star detained in Japan

Ric O’Barry, who starred in the Oscar-winning documentary The Cove, has been blocked at Tokyo’s Narita international airport by immigration authorities.

The American actor and director, who had trained dolphins used in the TV series Flipper, and became an activist against the killing of dolphins in Taiji, was stopped from entering the country because he is not considered a “tourist,” his lawyer told international media today.

Ric O’Barry with anti-dolphin hunting supporters in this November, 2015 photo/Faebook

Takashi Takano said officials blamed O’Barry’s tied to the anti-whaling group Sea Shepherd, a claim which O’Barry denies. The government would not comment on the case.

O’Barry, who has been detained before entering the country before, posted his exasperation to his Facebook page. “Here we go again …” along with this photo:


O’Barry’s son, Lincoln, sent a statement to the Associated Press, according to a report in The Guardian.

The Japanese government is cracking down on those who oppose their war on dolphins,” he wrote.

The Cove won the Academy Award for best documentary in 2009 for its depiction of the dolphins slaughter in a small Japanese fishing village. The film sparked international outrage about the little-known practise, which, despite protests a high-profile condemnation, continues today.

It’s not clear when O’Barry would be cleared – or outright denied – entry into the country.

Photo from Ric O'Barry's Dolphin Project/Facebook
Photo from Ric O’Barry’s Dolphin Project/Facebook

Photos Richard O’Barry/Ric O’Barry’s Dolphin Project/Facebook


About the author

Recovering newspaper reporter.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.