The music video for "Steal My Girl," which dropped in late October courtesy of tattooed muppet troubadours One Direction, features Danny DeVito as well as a smaller, charming ape: a young chimpanzee.
In response, primate welfare group Wild Futures pointed out the band's misdirected casting of a real chimpanzee. "We know that you would not deliberately abuse any animal, but believe that these situations arise because of a lack of understanding or knowledge of the reality for primate ‘actors,'" they write. "The use of wild animals in this way is a damaging and destructive practice that is condemned by zoologists, animal welfare scientists and conservationists worldwide."
Delcianna Winders, an attorney for PETA, minced few words in a statement and alleged that the company that owns the chimpanzee is less animal-friendly than it appears: "One Direction's millions of fans would not want the band to contribute to a chimpanzee's suffering or let a notoriously abusive animal exhibitor make money from their new music video."