Believe it or not, thousands of Americans are apparently raising monkeys as parts of their families, bestowing upon the li’l primates the same goodies they’d buy for their own offspring – cute, frilly dresses, toys, et cetera. My Monkey Baby looks into the lives of three couples that have made room for a hairy bundle of joy. While some of the ‘parents’ can’t have kids of their own, others are replacing ones that have already left the nest – Lori, for example, dresses up Jessica Marie, a tiny capuchin, in make-up and dresses to make the creature ‘look more like my daughter.’ ‘If I hear somebody call her a monkey, I throw a fit,’ says husband Jim. In documenting the relationships within these inter-species ‘families,’ as well as shedding light on the process of adopting a monkey (a practice that’s legal in 30 states), the show goes beyond cheap sensationalism, prompting interesting questions about the bond between human and animal.
Partners: Glasshead Productions (London) for Channel 4 distributed through Cineflix International
Aired: Channel 4, June 2009 (airing on TLC in US)
Length: 60 minutes
Rights available: Worldwide excluding UK, Ireland & U.S.