Hollywood star Alan Cumming offers $10,000 dollar reward for information on missing chimp

Alan Cumming is offering a $10,000 reward for anyone who has information about Tonka, the missing chimpanzee who starred with him and Rene Russo in the 1997 family comedy Buddy.

Tonka was last seen at the now-defunct chimpanzee breeding facility Missouri Primate Foundation (MPF).

In 2017 – a decade after they had starred together – Angus-born Cumming wrote to the MPF to say he had heard the animal was living in a cages.

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Cumming said he and the chimpanzee had formed a “special friendship” on Buddy and he hoped he and other animals at the foundation could be transferred to sanctuaries.

Actor Alan Cummings with Tonka a chimpanzee he met while filming his 1997 film Buddy. Picture: SWNS

Chimps were bred at the location and then rented out for movies and parties or sold to private owners.

The animal cruelty charity PETA has put up its own $10,000 reward for information about Tonka’s whereabouts.

“During the months we filmed together, baby Tonka and I became good friends, playing and grooming each other and just generally larking about,” Cumming said in a statement. “It’s horrible to think he mightbe in a cage in a dark basement somewhere or have met some other fate, so I’m appealing to whoever knows what has become of him to please come forward claim the reward.”

PETA originally sued the MPF over the living conditions and claimed animals “had been warehoused in often filthy, virtually barren enclosures.”

It obtained permission to move Tonka and six other chimpanzees to an accredited sanctuary, but Tonka was missing when PETA arrived to make the transfer in July 2021.

In a statement, PETA said: “The Foundation owner claimed that Tonka had died but told various stories that didn’t add up leaving PETA and Cumming to try to determine his whereabouts or perhaps his final resting place.”

It continues: ““If you know where Cumming’s former co-star may have been shipped, sold or hidden away, PETA wants to hear from you.

“If he’s still alive, Tonka deserves to live out the rest of his days surrounded by chimpanzee friends at a lush sanctuary, as ordered by the court, and someone out there might be able to help PETA get him there.”

Buddy stars Russo as animal lover and millionaire lets Buddy to live in her home and among her family. The film also starred Robbie Coltrane.

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