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Alan Cumming shares why he’s never been able to reunite with Buddy costar

Alan Cumming in The Traitors (US)
Alan Cumming on The Traitors (US) (Image: Peacock)

Alan Cumming has explained why he’s never been able to reunite with his costar from the film Buddy.

The Scottish actor, 58, starred in the 1997 flick opposite Renee Russo. The comedy-drama saw Russo’s character raising animals in her mansion. One of those is a gorilla, Buddy, played by the chimpanzee, Tonka.

As Cumming explained at the Save the Chimps fundraiser event in New York last week, Cumming and Tonka seemed to get along very well on set. The event also marked a year since Tonka, now 32, was found after his owner faked his death to avoid sending him to a sanctuary.

Discussing his relationship with Tonka, as per the MailOnline, Cumming said: “Tonka and I really connected and so much so that he wanted to groom me.” The Spy Kids actor also said the trainers recognised signs that Tonka wanted to groom Cumming, thinking the actor was another chimp.

“He was sexually aggressive and he loved me” – Alan Cumming

“On the last day of the film, they let Tonka groom me as a treat. I get really emotional even talking about it… We had this beautiful friendship,” Cumming continued.

He also shared that when it came to doing press for the film he expected to be reunited with Tonka. Only, he was told that wasn’t possible due to Tonka being older and more “sexually aggressive.”

He then explained that the chimp trainers’ fear was “he was basically going to sexually assault me.”

The Mail reports that last year Tonka’s owner said the chimp died in 2021. This was reportedly to avoid sending him to an ape sanctuary. He was later found to have been living with access to a 60-inch TV and a tablet device, as per Rolling Stone.

Tonka is now living at a private sanctuary in St. Lucie County, Florida. As well as Buddy, he also starred in George of the Jungle with Brendan Fraiser.

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