PETA is finding Eaten Alive a little hard to swallow. The animal rights group took aim on Wednesday, Nov. 5, at the Discovery Channel's controversial upcoming documentary special, which purports to show a man, Paul Rosolie, being swallowed whole by an anaconda while wearing a "custom-built snake-proof suit."
Delcianna Winders, PETA's Deputy General Counsel, released a statement about the show to Us Weekly, condemning both the network and Rosolie — author of Mother of God: An Extraordinary Journey Into the Uncharted Tributaries of the Western Amazon — for their involvement.
"Not only does this publicity stunt sound far-fetched, it would also be lethal for the snake," Winders said. "Shame on this pseudo 'wildlife expert' for tormenting and likely killing an animal for a thrill, and shame on the Discovery Channel for giving him the incentive to do it."
The statement continued: "Whatever the filmmaker has planned, the snake will likely pay the ultimate price, as animals usually do when they're used for entertainment. PETA has reached out to the Discovery Channel and asked them to pull the show, whether it is a hoax or not."
The network, for its part, assured Entertainment Weekly that Eaten Alive is not a hoax. Few other details have been made available, but EW reported that the snake in question does not die. (The stunt has apparently already been filmed.) The mag's working theory is that since Rosolie's "snake-proof suit" has a cord attached, he's simply "pulled back out the snake's mouth after being 'eaten.'"
Rosolie himself tweeted on Nov. 4 that he "would never hurt a living thing." He added, "But you'll have to watch #EatenAlive to find out how it goes down!"