Where: lived in
Utah with his trainers, the Doug Seus family
1/19/2001 Update! Added link to Bear Mother Web site. (Not directly related to Bart the Bear, but a good Web site about a bear movie that will definitely interest some of Bart's fans.)
5/21/2000 Update! Thanks to a few fans of Bart's, there are additional Bart the Bear pictures on this home page. Check them out.
5/18/2000 Update! Rest in peace, Bart. Sadly, our favorite bear actor has recently passed away. We'll always love you, Bart! Since I don't think I can express the sense of loss and respect for his legacy with the eloquence of the official announcement, here it is:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 18, 2000
BART THE BEARıS TM CAREER COMES TO AN END
HEBER CITY, UT - - - Bart the Bear TM died peacefully surrounded by his family and friends at his home in Utah on May 10, 2000.
Bart was born in a US zoo on January 19, 1978. His destiny was not to live out his 23 1/2 years in the unchanging confinement of a zoo, but to see the world and become a beloved member of a human family.
He came to Doug and Lynne Seus as a 5 pound bundle and grew to 1,500 pounds, standing 9 1/2 feet tall. His long film career took he and his family from the Austrian/Italian Alps to the wilderness of Alaska, all over the US and Canada and finally to the stage of the 1998 Academy Awards. He loved to be in the spotlight and relished the applause and cheers of the film crew much more than he did his salmon and blueberries.
Bart the Bearıs TM legacy went far beyond his film career. He is the "spokesbear" for the Animal Cancer Center at Colorado State University but his greatest role was as ambassador for the Vital Ground Foundation. Vital Ground has procured threatened wildlife habitat along the Rocky Mountain front and on Kodiak Island. Because of Bartıs life in captivity many of his wild brothers are able to roam free.
Bart is survived by his human family Doug, Lynne, Clint, Jed and Sausha and his bear brother "Tank". His olı swimming hole will still be filled with love and joy as the circle of life has just brought the Seusı 2 orphaned grizzly cubs. The cubıs mother was shot 200 miles north of Anchorage. These babies miraculously survived alone for over 2 days when the Alaska Fish and Game rescued them. The little boy cub will carry on Bartıs legacy and will be his namesake, although until he grows up he is being called "Little Bart". The little girl cub is called Honey. These cubs will follow in Bartıs giant footsteps to bring the wondrous spirit of the bear into many lives and hearts.
Tributes to Bart the Bearıs TM memory may be made to the Vital Ground Foundation, a 501(c)(3). Send contributions to: Post Office Box 982003, Park City, Utah 84098 or by calling (435) 658-0009.
Bart the Bear is the finest bear
actor in the world. Bart has appeared in many TV shows (including appearances as a bear cub on Grizzly Adams),
commercials, and movies. He was a star performer in "The Bear", "The Edge", and other Hollywood hits.
Bart is a 1480-pound Kodiak bear who lived in Midway, Utah
with his drama coach, animal trainers Doug and Lynn Seus. According to printed reports,
Mr. Seus wrestled with Bart and could even put his head in the bear's mouth for fun!
Mr. Seus also has other bears and wolves, including Bart's brother, Tank.
Bart was reportedly paid $1 million for his work in 'The Edge'. With Bart's Hollywood
earnings, Mr. Seus and his wife Lynne have worked to create safe havens for grizzly bears,
including purchasing prime grizzly bear habitat in Montana. The charity through which the habitat is purchased is the Vital Ground Foundation, which is also the "Official" Bart the Bear home page.
Pictured above: Bart The Bear with his trainer and drama coach, Doug Seus.
The Vital Ground Foundation makes available a short biography of Bart on its Web site. Here are some excerpts of the bio to give you an idea of Bart's special history:
"Bart was born to captive, orphaned, wild bears at a U.S. Zoo. The Zoo was unable to keep the 1 1/2 lb baby Bart, and he could not be returned to the wild. When he was 5 weeks old Doug and Lynne decided to take him. They bottle fed the 6 lb baby in their kitchen until he was 11 months old and weighed 300 lbs. Too big for the kitchen, they built a special bear house for Bart at their ranch.
"That was 20 years ago and now Bart is a fully grown bear. He's 9' 6", weighs 1480 lbs and instead of a bottle eats about 60 lbs of food a day. Grizzlies in captivity, or those that make it past 15 in the wild, live about 30 to 35 years. Bart is in his prime. No one knows how long a bear like Bart can live protected from the rigors of the wild, perhaps 40 or 45 years.
"Doug and Lynne's relationship with Bart is based on love and affection, creating life long bonds of friendship. When Doug and Bart are working on a 'behavior' such as 'play dead' or 'peekaboo' Doug is asking Bart to act. No force, drugs or tranquilizers are ever used. Doug and Lynne's method is based on rewards. What works? Pesto, apples, Hawaiian Punch (yes really), and carrots.
"Bart the bear lives with Doug and Lynne Seus at the Wasatch Rocky Mountain Wildlife Ranch. With their children, Sausha, Jed, and Clint they run the ranch and are Bart's acting coaches. Now that Bart is fully grown, Doug and Lynne are busy training the next generation. The kids are Tank, and Bubba. Tank and Bubba are now 2 yrs 9 months old, 6' 2" tall, and weigh a mere 475 pounds.
"Besides bears Doug and Lynne train wolves and dogs. They have all been seen extensively throughout the movie world. Doug and Lynne often donate the use of their trained animals for educational and conservation appeals."
Pictured above: Bart The Bear presents the Best Achievement in Sound Effects Editing Oscar on February 10th, 1998.
"They don't give Oscars for best supporting bear, and Bart is
probably not on the American Film Institute's short list for a life achievement award. But
his performance here [in The Edge], the capstone of an illustrious career, is a milestone
in ursine acting. Here's hoping the big guy didn't have to work for scale." - Kenneth
Turan, Los Angeles
"Bart the Bear of 'The Bear' fame was a big hit with me. At least I believed he was a bear."
- Biff, Movie Raters
"Bart...gives the most realistic performance in 'The Edge'. You've
heard the expression, 'This job is a real bear.' Well, Bart is a real bear. And, to his
credit, he's completely believable as a real bear." - Mark Dawidziak, Ohio.com
"Bart is the John Wayne of bear
actors," Lee Tamahori, quoted in Jam
"The uncanny skills of both the bear and his trainer make 'The Edge's' fight scenes rank among the most convincing and terrifying animal-man confrontations ever put on film.," Michael Wilmington, quoted in Chicago Tribune
"Bart...growls ferociously and moves with fierce single-mindedness.
You definitely would not want to be around him when he's angry or hungry, which is
practically all the time." - Philip Wuntch, Dallas Morning
If you're a fan of Bart the Bear, please sign this Guestbook.
Tell the whole world which performance you think is Bart's greatest. Since this Web page debuted in February, 1999, dozens of Bart's fans have found it and shared their love for this fine animal with the world. Thank you all for visiting.
If you have the means, may I suggest you make a donation to Vital Ground, Bart's favorite charity. Vital Ground is a non-profit foundation devoted to habitat conservation for grizzly bears and their habitat in Montana. If you go to the Vital Ground site, you can order Bart T-shirts and get autographed photos (by Bart's trainers - not Bart, I assume, although I'd donate more to get a paw print!).
One more thing. Some folks have asked for more photos of Bart. I'm afraid I don't have any (I'm just a fan of his). If any of Bart's fans out there have any pictures or additional information about The Big Guy, feel free to send me an e-mail, and I'll share what I can with the world, or post your pictures of Bart on the Web and I'll add a link to them.
Original content is İ Copyright, 1999-2001, by Joe Perez. Photos of Bart the Bear, and the name 'Bart the Bear', may be trademarks or copyrights of their owner(s), who bear (pun intended) no responsibility for this Web site.