Packard Plant tiger shoot assistant lambasts 'reports that are half-truths or no truth at all'


  • Photo from Andy Didorosi's Facebook page
It's been a crazy week since reports surfaced Monday that a tiger went on the loose in Detroit's Packard Plant after a shoot by British photographer David Yarrow went awry. Once the story went viral, various groups have criticized the individuals and agencies involved with the shoot, with PETA recently requesting a federal investigation into the company that provided the tiger.

Fstoppers reached out to shoot assistant, location scout, and "fixer" Anthony Barchock — the man shown in video apparently attempting to ward off the tiger with a weed whacker — for comment.

According to Barchock, "the worse part of it is me on film looking like I am attacking a tiger with yard implements and the reports that are half-truths or no truth at all."

Barchock says Yarrow ignored his numerous warnings, including questions about the logistics of getting a tiger to climb the stairs to the roof of the Packard Plant. As a result, Barchock says, the animal wound up exhausted and irritable:

The only thing known was exotic animals, a model possibly extras. One of the possible shoot locations discussed, and decided upon once he physically seen it was 5 floors up on an exposed roof. I explained to the trainers and David via email July 24th that mid-August weather in the Midwest could be hot and humid. But there was no concern or even a reply to that email. I even brought it up again in the pre shoot dinner but again no concern showed by the training team that the tiger could handle the weather and trek up the stairs. Well this was not the case and why he was laying down in the landing of the stair case. He was tired and frustrated.

And that is where the weed whip comes into play.

After about an hour the trainers asked if I could get a leafblower. I’m in the middle of three and a half million square feet of concrete and ruins, where am I going to get that? So I texted Kari, who I have lost as a friend and contact now, who I assumed knew of the events taking place. Well she did not, David’s assistant did not tell the Packard of the animal(s) onsite. His assistant’s excuse, “they didn’t ask”. 

Read Barchock's full letter here