"Even if we get a positive vote there, it doesn't mean we're moving forward with Blue World," he said, noting that the show redesign would cost up to one-half of Project Blue World's $100 million price tag. "We can achieve those objectives with a lot less money."
He described the more "natural" show as a "very marketable attraction that gets a return on investment."
The presentation as a whole was a broad look at SeaWorld's new marketing strategy, a multifaceted approach designed to paint the entertainment conglomerate as a rescue and conservation group.
"I really see a company that's focused on protecting wild animals in wild places," Manby said, later suggesting that the company's been too "humble, modest" to push that agenda.
SeaWorld has been struggling financially since the release of the 2013 film "Blackfish," which sparked concern over how the marine park treats its animals. On Thursday, the company revealed yet another quarter of below-forecast earnings, taking a stock market tumble.
And on Friday, U.S. Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA) announced that he plans to introduce federal legislation, titled the Orca Responsibility and Care Advancement (ORCA) Act, that would phase out the use of orcas in captivity.
It's not yet clear whether this show repackaging will assuage an increasingly aware public. But at this point, it doesn't look like it will be much of an improvement for the orcas.
Editor's note: This post has been updated to reflect additional information from SeaWorld's presentation on Monday.