Willie arrived with four other chimpanzees who were owned by Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation. All had been trained to perform in Project X, a popular film about chimpanzees used for Air Force research. In the film’s story an air force pilot and an animal researcher risk their lives to save chimpanzees from hazardous experiments. Willie was born at San Antonio’s Southwest Foundation for Biomedical Research. Willie was raised by his mother only for six months, then removed to the lab’s nursery. He was transferred to the entertainment business around the age of three. His most joyful time of day is when caregivers arrive with wheelbarrows of carrots, lettuce, broccoli, apples, pears, melons, plums, bananas and other fruits and vegetables.

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