Temple Grandin

Temple Grandin, author of Animals Make Us Human and Animals in Translation

“Every movie fan who loves to see animals in their favorite movies will want to read Animal Stars. The book contains lots of animal-training tips, along with the behind-the-scenes stories.”
Temple Grandin, author of Animals Make Us Human and Animals in Translation



Due to overwhelming popular demand, e-book edition to be released on August 19th; Every book purchased between now and September 30th comes with free gift!

Washington, D.C., August 14, 2014 – Since the dawn of Hollywood, animal actors have played some of the most unforgettable characters ever seen on the silver screen. Their characters have charmed and delighted moviegoers and television audiences for generations, and now, American Humane Association, the first national humane organization, is pleased to announce that its new book “Animal Stars: Behind the Scenes With Your Favorite Animal Actors,” will be published by New World Library on September 25th. Written by American Humane Association’s President and CEO Dr. Robin Ganzert and Allen and Linda Anderson, the husband-and-wife founders of the Angel Animals Network, and featuring a foreword by “America’s Veterinarian” Dr. Marty Becker, “Animal Stars” offers unprecedented access to the fascinating, hidden world of animals and animal trainers in today’s film and television industry — and the celebrities they work with.

Ever wonder how a cat learned to flush a toilet on camera (Meet the Fockers)? Or why the dog Uggie was accused of stealing every scene he was in in The Artist, including on the red carpet? From Joey in War Horse to the wolves in Game of Thrones, what we see on-screen is only the tip of the iceberg. The heartwarming stories in “Animal Stars” reveal the trainers, actors, directors, and, of course, dogs, cats, horses, birds, and more in their behind-the-scenes glory. Readers will discover that certain animal stars have diva tendencies, while others have rags-to-riches backstories, and that directors and actors stretch professional boundaries to create emotional ties with their nonhuman coworkers.

Whether penguins, horses, mixed-breed rescue dogs, or lynxes, the animals on set are as lovable, personality-filled, and at times frustrating as the animals in our own homes. World-class Hollywood animal trainers offer bonus tips for training pets after each chapter, and film icons like Steven Spielberg, Julia Roberts, Ewan McGregor, and Hailee Steinfeld share personal recollections about working with the animal stars who stole their hearts.

This book features unprecedented access to the Hollywood stars from the animal kingdom that only an organization with nearly 150 years’ experience of protecting the nation’s children and animals like American Humane Association could provide. “Animal Stars” will be published on the eve of the 75th anniversary of the organization’s “No Animals Were Harmed®” Program, which has overseen the protection of literally millions of animal actors on thousands of movie and television sets around the world since 1940. The “No Animals Were Harmed®” Program, the only industry-sanctioned program with oversight of animals in filmed production, has made the protection of animal actors its duty and charter.

“Animal actors have been delighting audiences for more than a century, and I know that some of my earliest and fondest memories from when I was kid have to do with those animals I saw in Disney movies and watched on TV,” said Dr. Ganzert. “This book is my love letter to Hollywood’s beloved animal stars, and I know readers will have a newfound admiration for the hard work and dedication that these animals and their trainers undergo to bring these spectacular roles to life on screen.”

Though it’s still more than a month until publication date, “Animal Stars” has already received rave reviews and is currently on both the and Barnes & Noble Booksellers bestseller lists. Due to this overwhelming popular demand, New World Library has agreed to make the e-book edition of the book available on August 19 to 11 major e-book retail partners, including Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Apple, Google Play, and Kobo. As an added bonus, all books ordered between now and September 30 come with a free gift – your choice of a commemorative “Animal Stars” tote bag or coffee mug!

Ganzert and some of the special animal stars featured in the book will be hitting the road this fall as part of a special national book signing tour, with dates already booked in Dallas, Houston, Minneapolis-St. Paul, Washington, Boston, and more to be announced very soon!

For more information about “Animal Stars,” including book signing tour dates; special videos from Hollywood directors Steven Spielberg, Quentin Tarantino, and Cameron Crowe on the important work of the “No Animals Were Harmed®” Program; and information on how to receive the special free gift with every book ordered by September 30, please visit

American Humane

American Humane

About American Humane Association

American Humane Association is the country’s first national humane organization and the only one dedicated to protecting both children and animals. Since 1877, American Humane Association has been at the forefront of virtually every major advance in protecting our most vulnerable from cruelty, abuse and neglect. Today we’re also leading the way in understanding the human-animal bond and its role in therapy, medicine and society. American Humane Association reaches millions of people every day through groundbreaking research, education, training and services that span a wide network of organizations, agencies and businesses. You can help make a difference, too. Visit American Humane Association at today.

Animal Stars: Behind the Scenes with Your Favorite Animal Actors

Animal Stars: Behind the Scenes with Your Favorite Animal Actors

Meeting Crystal, the Monkey from NIGHT AT THE MUSEUM Movies by Allen and Linda Anderson

Don’t we all, deep in our hearts, want to meet a celebrity superstar someday?

Our opportunity came when we interviewed Thomas (Tom) Gunderson and met his family’s most famous member—Crystal, the adorable capuchin monkey who starred in the NIGHT AT THE MUSEUM movies, among many other memorable roles.

Linda and Crystal

Linda Anderson and Crystal

Meeting this delightful A-lister movie star was a special part of our extensive research as co-authors with Robin Ganzert, president of American Humane Association, for our new book ANIMAL STARS: Behind the Scenes with Your Favorite Animal Actors (New World Library, September, 2014, We had to literally go “behind the scenes” to see for ourselves how the animals we all love in film, television, and commercials are trained and cared for.

When they’re on set, American Humane Association Certified Animal Safety Representatives make sure conditions are right for animal safety. Their jobs are part of American Humane Association’s Film & TV Unit’s mission for their “No Animals Were Harmed” service. But what are animal actors’s lives like when they are not on set? We wanted to find out firsthand.

Meeting Crystal

Driving through Southern California’s dry terrain in mid-July we traveled to the home of Thomas Gunderson, his wife Stacy, and their two children. Coming from the Midwest’s Twin Cities, we were definitely not part of the LA world of fashion and coolness. Would Crystal, with her fame and status, view us as just one more celebrity hound? Would she be sociable or distant?

Robin Ganzert and Crystal

Robin Ganzert and Crystal

Robin Ganzert’s previous experience visiting Crystal and Tom on the set of WE BOUGHT A ZOO made us hope we’d come away from the experience without needing a shower. When Robin, a petite blond CEO with a soft Southern accent, first met the capuchin film star, Crystal leapt from Tom’s arms to Robin’s shoulder. The generous monkey was on a break and eating her favorite treat–flavored yogurt. Wanting to share, she slathered our coauthor’s hair with her yummy, gooey dairy product. Talk about human/animal bonding! Crystal made a new friend, and Robin had her first yogurt shampoo.

Tom and Stacy graciously greeted us on that hot summer day. Their faces shone with big, loving smiles. We felt immediately relaxed, sensing our visit would be fun and productive. Our first glimpse of Crystal was of her on the couch, in the family’s den, which is the center of a large open main floor. She only glanced at us briefly and continued to focus on one of the Gunderson children.

Carefully picking through each strand, she made sure every hair was in place as she groomed the child. Crystal’s patient work looked like a tedious task, but with each movement of her hands her little monkey face showed love and satisfaction for a job well done.

From this initial family tableau, it was clear that Crystal’s job on a film set might be to learn from Tom how to perform movie magic. But at home, taking care of the family she deeply cares about is Job Number One.

While Crystal continued ridding the Gunderson offspring of fleas and ticks, which of course, they did not have, she surreptitiously checked us out by occasionally glancing in our direction. Tom said, “Crystal will say hi to you in her own time. She doesn’t like people trying to get her to like them.”

Life as a world-famous Hollywood star must be grueling. Was Crystal’s indifference to us a sign of diva behavior? No, according to Tom, just a careful monkey protecting herself and her family from strangers.

We sat on the adjoining couch and prepared our notepads and tape recorder for the interview, all the while commenting on sweet and adorable Crystal. At last, Crystal completed her grooming tasks and began to move around. When this intelligent individual began to realize we were not there for her autograph, she officially invited us to stick around for a while and scrambled over to greet Linda.

Allen took photos of Crystal sitting on Linda’s shoulder. Enticed by Tom spooning flavored yogurt, she posed for the camera with her elbow resting on Linda’s head while making a show of how tiresome celebrity photos can be for a star.

At Home

Tom and Stacy introduced us to Squirt, Crystal’s capuchin best friend and playmate. What a great animal star trainer Tom is with his gentle, kind, and loving manner. Crystal shows every sign of feeling secure, loved, and always supplied with her favorite flavored yogurt.

And Tom made us feel even more comfortable with Minneapolis meeting Hollywood when he revealed that he had spent part of his childhood in Minnesota near where we live. Maybe it’s a small world after all. One in which animal stars can come down from the big screen and let us all get to know them and their human and animal families in whole new ways.

Allen and Linda Anderson are founders of Angel Animals Network ( and co-authors with Robin Ganzert, Ph.D. of ANIMAL STARS: Behind the Scenes with Your Favorite Animal Actors, Foreword by Mart y Becker, DVM.

Tom Gunderson and Crystal

Tom Gunderson and Crystal