"African Cats" is still more than two weeks from opening on Earth Day, but moviegoers have already bought $1.7 million in tickets to see the movie during its opening week (April 22-28) and save the African savanna in the process. Thanks to the "See 'African Cats,' Save the Savanna" initiative, Disneynature's pledge to make a contribution in honor of everyone who sees the film opening week already translates to more than 9,500 acres of land within Kenya's Amboseli Wildlife Corridor—and that number continues to rise.
"We are very impressed with the passion people are showing for 'African Cats'—advance ticket sales for this film have surpassed both 'Earth' and 'Oceans' at this stage of the game, which shows how excited moviegoers are for both the movie and the 'Save the Savanna' initiative," said Alan Bergman, president, The Walt Disney Studios. "The Amboseli Corridor is an essential passage utilized by so many animals in the African savanna. The advance ticket sales so far will allow Disneynature with African Wildlife Foundation's assistance to conserve more than 9,500 acres of this passage—which equates to 19 Disney's Animal Kingdoms, or nearly two-thirds the size of Manhattan—and we still have two weeks till opening day."
"The 'See "African Cats," Save the Savanna' program transforms the moviegoing experience into tangible on-the-ground conservation action. The commitment of Disneynature combined with the passion of moviegoers will raise critical funds to conserve the land that the magnificent species featured in 'African Cats' call home," said Dr. Patrick Bergin, CEO, African Wildlife Foundation. "Through this amazing collaboration, we celebrate our 50th Anniversary together with Disneynature and all the people who are helping establish the Amboseli Wildlife Corridor."
"See 'African Cats,' Save the Savanna" continues Disneynature's conservation efforts, which began with its first release, "Earth" (2009), for which three million trees were planted in Brazil's Atlantic Forest. The program in support of "Oceans" (2010) helped establish 40,000 acres of marine protected areas in The Bahamas, which contain miles of vital coral reef.
"SEE 'AFRICAN CATS,' SAVE THE SAVANNA"
During the film's opening week (April 22-28), a portion of the proceeds from that week's ticket sales will be donated to the African Wildlife Foundation (AWF) through the Disney Worldwide Conservation Fund to ensure the future of lions, cheetahs, elephants, zebras, giraffes and a host of other animals in the vibrant African savanna. The AWF will be working to protect the Amboseli Wildlife Corridor, a passage between the Amboseli, Tsavo West and Chyulu Hills National Parks that is frequently used by a variety of wildlife.
The film, which will be released in theaters worldwide, opens in North America on April 22, 2011. Tickets for groups of 20 or more are already available in the United States by calling 1-888-DISNEY6. Tickets are also available online at www.disney.com/africancats.
There are also a number of innovative online efforts underway that allow moviegoers to pledge their commitment to the film and in doing so, support the cause.
- Like Disneynature on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/Disneynature
- Pledge to see "African Cats" on Eventful: http://eventful.com/africancats
- Join the "African Cats" grassroots community and donate to the African Wildlife Foundation on Causes: http://www.causes.com/africancats
- Buy tickets through Disney Tickets Together: http://apps.facebook.com/ticketstogether/