The Paw Project: A Documentary

07 Oct

The UCLA Animal Law Program is proud to announce its screening of the documentary The Paw Project, which will be held at the UCLA School of Law (Room 1420) on October 24, 2012 from 5:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. The Paw Project documentary is an inspiring David and Goliath story of a grassroots movement to protect felines, both large and small, from the cruelty of declawing and how the movement has prevailed despite the efforts of well-funded professional veterinary associations to thwart the movement.

The Paw Project

In the United States today, approximately 25% of domesticated cats are declawed. Declawing is the amputation of the last bone in a cat’s toes. Despite the physical and behavioral harm inflicted on cats who are declawed, many veterinarians continue to recommend the procedure — which costs upwards of $1,200 per hour — even for very young kittens.

These are animals we love, and with whom we share our homes. Why aren’t we being told the truth of what the declawing procedure involves? What goes on when the vet takes our beloved companions in the back of the veterinary clinic? The Paw Project documentary chronicles the happy and unexpected twist of fate that led to the protection of many animals through the grassroots advocacy led by Dr. Conrad and The Paw Project. We invite our readers to watch the trailer for The Paw Project documentary [VIDEO].

The screening will be followed by a panel presentation and Q&A session, featuring an exciting panel of speakers, including: filmmaker Dr. Jennifer Conrad, editor Allan Holzman, and David R. Ginsburg, Executive Director of the UCLA Entertainment, Media, and Intellectual Property Law Program. Detailed biographies of our speakers are provided below. Admission to the conference is free; parking is $11.00.

Directions to the UCLA School of Law:
Take the 405 to the Sunset Boulevard exit.
Sunset Boulevard (east) to Hilgard Avenue, turn right.
Follow Hilgard Avenue to the Westholme Drive (second light) entrance to the campus.
Turn right on Westholme Drive.
The parking kiosk is immediately on the right.
Please tell the attendant that you are attending an event at the Law School, and you will be directed to the nearest available parking lot (most likely Lot 2).

Dr. Jennifer Conrad, filmmaker

Dr. Jennifer Conrad has cared for wildlife on six continents for over two decades. She is an impassioned advocate for animal welfare, driven by her firsthand witnessing of the suffering and exploitation of animals, destruction of habitat, and gratuitous hunting — all of which threaten the welfare and survival of many species. In her former role as head veterinarian at a wildlife sanctuary, Dr. Conrad founded The Paw Project, which rehabilitates big cats, such as lions, tigers, cougars and jaguars maimed by declawing.

The stunning spotted leopard featured above is named Oscar. Before Dr. Conrad came to his aid, Oscar was used as a prop in a Las Vegas magic act. His owner declawed Oscar as a baby, but when his feet began hurting too much for him to continue participating in the act, his owner decided to have him killed. The organization Forever Wild intervened and rescued him, bringing him to the sanctuary for paw repair surgery by The Paw Project veterinarians. Photograph taken by Christina Bush.

Allan Holzman, editor

Mr. Holzman’s illustrious career in film spans three decades, marked with numerous awards for his work, including: two Emmy Awards, a Cable ACE Award, and a Peabody Award for his work as director-editor for Steven Spielberg’s Survivors of the Holocaust; an American Cinema Editors Eddy Award for his feature documentary Old Man River, and a combined eight “best documentary film” awards for Old Man River and Sounds of Memphis. He served as editor for The Paw Project documentary.

Mr. Holzman is a graduate of Bennington College and The American Film Institute. He teaches a course in graduate film editing at the USC School of Cinematic Arts, where he has made documentaries on visualizing film with Steven Spielberg’s production designer Rick Carter.

David R. Ginsburg, UCLA School of Law

David R. Ginsburg is the Executive Director of the UCLA School of Law’s Entertainment, Media, and Intellectual Property Law Program, where he teaches courses on entertainment law, entertainment law research and writing.  Mr. Ginsburg has also guest-taught at UCLA the motion picture and television law segments of Film and Television: Entertainment Law, Business Practices, and Negotiation Strategies, and a “Deals” segment as part of the joint Law and Management seminar, Elements of Economics Organizations seminar.

In the motion picture industry, Mr. Ginsburg was an independent producer and executive, among his work in film, he served as the President of Artisan Pictures and Executive Vice-President of Artisan Entertainment prior to its December 2003 acquisition by Lionsgate Films.  In television, Mr. Ginsburg served from 1986 to 1997 as the President and Chief Executive Officer of Citadel Entertainment, a company which he co-founded and where he produced over 50 films, and has been nominated personally three times for the Emmy and four times for the Golden Globe.  His television production credits include several Emmy-winners, and many of those productions have been nominated for and won numerous other awards (including the Golden Globe for Rasputin in 1997 and the Humanitas Prize for Between Mother and Daughter in 1995).  For a more complete online IMDb production resumé, see


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