British Photographer Unleashes a Tiger and Two Wolves in Detroit

Photo: Any Didorosi.

Kari Smith, the director of development for the former Packard Motor Company plant site in Detroit, arranged for a two-day photography shoot on the premises for British photographer and conservationist David Yarrow.

What Smith didn’t realize is that the wildlife photographer was going to bring along a tiger, a bobcat, and two wolves.

David Yarrow. Lion King, (2014). Photo: Courtesy artnet.

David Yarrow. Lion King (2014).
Photo: Courtesy artnet.

Smith told Detroit News she immediately shut down the project when the guard notified her of the animals after he went around the premises checking for permits. “The shoot was authorized. The animals were not authorized,” Smith stated. “They had two days, waivers and fees paid for a basic photo shoot. Nothing else. There was no mention of any animals on site.”

At which point, a tiger decided to occupy the fourth floor staircase of a building.

One of Yarrow’s crew members called up his friend, Andy Didorosi, a Detroit resident, to help out with their sticky situation.

“I got a call from a friend who asked me to help them get this tiger out of a staircase,” Didorosi told Detroit Free Press. “He asked me if I had a leaf blower, and I said I had a weed wacker, so he told me to bring that. … I stopped what I was doing, grabbed my tools and hopped in my truck, because, you know, tiger…”

Didorosi continued, “I don’t know much about tiger logistics, but we were told to [bring] this huge blue tarp monster with the weed wacker and try to be scary and make loud noises. That just made him angry. You could say he got tiger rage, so we retreated.”

Afterwards police were on the scene when the hashtag #tigerwatch15 started trending. The tiger was eventually guided downstairs and no one was hurt.

Yesterday a cartoon of the stairwell tiger was posted online, and #tigerwatch15 t-shirts are now available for purchase, featuring the tiger and the now-legendary weed wacker. The profits will go to a rabbit sanctuary.

The 3.5 million square-foot Packard Plant space was purchased by Spanish investor Fernando Palazuelo for $400,000 in 2013.

Photo: Andy Didorosi/ Facebook.

Photo: Andy Didorosi/ Facebook.

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