Mark Forbes - Animal Consultant / Coordinator / Head Trainer Mark grew up in southern Oregon. His family had a small farm with a bunch of different kinds of animals. After a year attending state college, Mark heard about Moorpark College’s Exotic Animal Training and Management Program and decided to enroll. After graduation, he worked at Knott’s Berry Farm doing a dolphin and sea lion show before signing with Birds & Animals Unlimited, first at Universal Studios then to television, commercials and films. Mark worked hard to hone his craft and become one of the most well known and requested film animal consultants in the business today.

In the film Evan Almighty, where a congressman becomes a modern-day Noah, many species of animal were required and someone with experience was needed to make it all look real. The job fell to Mark Forbes, Evan Almighty‘s animal coordinator. Mark enlisted close to 100 species — the largest number in movie history. Of course he had to film many of them separately as they paraded onto the ark in order to avoid predator-prey issues. He didn’t want the wolves going after the sheep or the foxes chasing the chickens. It takes extensive training to shoot what might seem like a simple scene. “The most important thing in animal training is trust. On a set, there are lights being moved around, strange noises, a lot of loud orders being given. You can’t necessarily prep all those things before you get to the set,” says Forbes, ” so the animals have to trust their trainers.”

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