Beluga whales create art in Japan aquarium

Updated 01 October 2013

Beluga whales create art in Japan aquarium

TOKYO: Beluga whales at an aquarium near Tokyo are learning how to paint pictures as part of an autumn art program for visitors, an official said Wednesday.
The sea creatures at the Hakkeijima Sea Paradise aquarium in Yokohama will be showing off their skills with specially adapted paintbrushes that they can hold in their mouths, a spokeswoman for the aquarium said.
A trainer standing on the poolside dips the brush into paint and guides the belugas to produce pictures that bear a passing resemblance to natural scenes.
“This is part of our autumn, the best season for art,” she said.
“The ideal is that a beluga will emulate what one of our customers has painted — of course trainers will guide the whale to do that,” she said.
“We’ll see how well they manage.”
Three belugas, two females and a male, will demonstrate their new skills in rotation once every weekday and twice a day at weekends, she said.
The beluga, also known as the white whale, is on the red list of threatened species published by the International Union for Conservation of Nature.
Some activists object to the training of whales and dolphins for aquarium shows and Japan is frequently the target of complaints over its attitude to animals, particularly the annual slaughter of dolphins in the western town of Taiji.


Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson leads Forbes list of highest-paid actors

Updated 21 August 2019

Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson leads Forbes list of highest-paid actors

  • Last year, Johnson was second behind George Clooney
  • Includes his salary and a share of profits from films, $700,000 per episode of HBO series “Ballers”

LOS ANGELES: Action movie hero Dwayne Johnson, star of the “Jumanji” and “Fast and Furious” franchises, topped the annual list of the world’s highest-paid actors, Forbes magazine reported on Wednesday.
Johnson, the former wrestler once known as The Rock, pulled in $89.4 million from June 2018 to June 2019, the magazine said.
That includes his salary and a share of profits from films, $700,000 per episode of HBO series “Ballers,” and seven figures in royalties from his line of clothing, shoes and headphones with Under Armor.
Last year, Johnson was second behind George Clooney, who reaped a windfall from the sale of his tequila company.
Next on this year’s list were two stars of “Avengers: Endgame,” the highest-grossing movie of all time.
Chris Hemsworth, who played Thor, took in $76.4 million, while Iron Man actor Robert Downey Jr. earned $66 million, Forbes said.
Other “Endgame” stars — Bradley Cooper, Chris Evans and Paul Rudd — also landed in the top 10.
Most of Cooper’s earnings, however, came from “A Star is Born,” the musical drama he directed, produced, co-wrote and starred in with Lady Gaga. Cooper collected $40 million of his $57 million total from that film, Forbes said.
The fourth-biggest earner was Bollywood actor Akshay Kumar, with $65 million, and Hong Kong-born actor and martial artist Jackie Chan with $58 million.
The figures are pre-tax and do not include deductions for fees given to agents, managers and lawyers, Forbes said.