It’s nearly been 20 years since James Cromwell said, “That’ll do, Pig. That’ll do,” in the film Babe.
Farmer Arthur Hoggett, played by Cromwell, initially puts off slaughtering the titular piglet only in order to allow it to fatten up. But when the hog proves to be adept at wrangling sheep, he becomes a important living, working member of the farm.
Cromwell is talking pigs again recently, as an animal rights activist, narrating a disturbing, violent video (serious warning: it’s really, truly graphic) cut from undercover footage shot at a Wal-Mart pork producer.
The chain promotes its low prices, he says in the opening, however, “when it comes to the pork sold at its store, animals are left to pay the highest price of all: A life filled with misery and deprivation.”
Not only is the behavior of workers in the facility reprehensible—employees are shown severely beating both sows and piglets, as well as docking tails and castrating young piglets without administering any anesthetic.
“Dead and dying piglets are a frequent sight at this Wal-Mart supplier,” Cromwell says.
A Wal-Mart spokesperson told The Hollywood Reporter, "We think the animal handling in this video is unacceptable," but the statement does not address the issue of gestation crates—the widely banned, very tight confinements sows are forced to inhabit in such a facility.
“These curious and social animals are driven mad by boredom and stress in these nightmarish conditions. This is torture, plain and simple,” Cromwell says of the horrendous impact the gestation crates have on pigs. Viewers are encouraged to call on Wal-Mart to ban the confinement practice via a petition on Walmartcruelty.com.