King Kong (1933): With Chris Whittier, DVM, PhD



  • January 27, 2014
  • This event has passed.
  • Offering Format: Public Event
  • Recommended for grade 12 and adults
  • Coolidge Corner Theatre
  • Members, students, and seniors: $8; general admission: $10
  • Associated Persons

    With Chris Whittier, DVM, PhD


Adventure filmmaker Carl Denham (Robert Armstrong) searches the streets of New York City to find a lead actress for a new film he's about to make on a mysterious, uncharted island. He stumbles onto the beautiful but broke Ann Darrow (scream queen Fay Wray), who eagerly accepts the part. Nothing could prepare them for the adventure and peril that lay ahead — including Kong, the colossal gorilla that rules over the island and becomes smitten with Darrow. Eventually, Denham and his crew subdue the mighty ape and bring him back to the city in shackles, where he is exploited as the "eighth wonder of the world."

But when Kong believes his beloved Ann is in danger, he breaks loose, wreaking havoc as he searches for her. Kong's last stand atop the Empire State Building is one of cinema's most iconic images.

Join us before the film as guest speaker and veterinarian Chris Whittier discusses fictional vs. real gorillas, the state of the world's gorilla population, and his experiences treating wild gorillas in central Africa.

With Science on Screen, the Coolidge Corner Theatre creatively pairs a feature film or documentary with lively presentations by notable figures from the world of science, medicine, and technology. The Science on Screen series is co-presented by the Museum of Science, Boston and supported by a grant from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, with additional support from Gesmer, Updegrove LLP, and Richard Anders.

Photo © RKO Radio Pictures Inc/Photofest

Also in This Series

View other presentations in the Science on Screen Series.

Additional Information

Chris Whittier, DVM, PhD, is research assistant professor and director of the Master of Science in Conservation Medicine Program at Tufts Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine, and associate veterinarian and USAID PREDICT Global Coordinator at Smithsonian's National Zoological Park. Dr. Whittier completed his PhD and six years' working in central Africa as the regional field veterinarian for the Mountain Gorilla Veterinary Project. During that time he was based in Rwanda performing clinical duties as a wildlife veterinarian monitoring and treating wild gorillas in five national parks in Rwanda, Uganda, and DR Congo.

Dr. Whittier is a reviewer for a number of scientific journals and is continuing field veterinary work with gorillas in the Central African Republic.