Tiger trainer doc is ’fascinating look at female empowerment’
Susan and David Rockefeller Jr. hosted a dinner at their Upper East Side home following a MoMA screening of Leslie Zemeckis’ latest film, “Mabel, Mabel, Tiger Trainer.”
The documentary follows Mabel Stark, the world’s first female tiger trainer who joined the circus in 1911 and made it to the center ring despite being told that women could never work with the big cats. She continued to bravely work with the cats even though she was mauled multiple times, including by leopards during a parade.
Said one impressed guest, “It’s the most fascinating look at female empowerment.”
Zemeckis, wearing a Tom Ford tiger-print dress, admitted after the movie screening that she wasn’t that brave with big cats.
“During the filming, I only got into a cage once with a baby tiger cub and was terrified.”
Her husband, “Back to the Future” director Robert Zemeckis, executive-produced. He’s next directing “The Women of Marwen” with Steve Carell, and philosophically figured, “The life of a carny is no different than the closely knit nomadic life of actors on a movie set.”
Guests at the screening included Martha Stewart. The film — which also details the history of animal trainers and the American circus, along with the recent decline of live animal exhibits — has played six festivals to acclaim.