‘Tiger King’ stars: Where are they now?

7 mins read


“Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness” took Netflix by storm in early 2020, and now a second season has renewed interest in the show’s stars.

The first season of the docuseries followed the story of Joseph “Joe Exotic” Maldonado-Passage up until his 22-year sentencing for his involvement in a murder-for-hire plot against fellow big cat enthusiast Carole Baskin.

The second season dove deeper into whether Maldonado-Passage is innocent, as he has repeatedly claimed, as well as into other questions left open by the initial season.

Now that a second season of “Tiger King” has brought the show’s stars to the forefront once again, here’s a look at where they are now:

‘TIGER KING 2’: WHAT IT’S ABOUT, WHEN IT AIRS AND EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW

Joseph “Joe Exotic” Maldonado-Passage

Joseph Maldonado-Passage seen in a Santa Rosa County Jail booking photo.

Joseph Maldonado-Passage seen in a Santa Rosa County Jail booking photo.
(Santa Rosa County Jail via AP)

Maldonado-Passage, better known as “Joe Exotic,” is currently in prison, serving out his 22-year sentence after having been found guilty of participating in a murder-for-hire plot against his nemesis, Carole Baskin. 

Allen Glover, the hitman-for-hire, did not carry out the act and flipped the script in the second season, maintaining Maldonado-Passage’s innocence.

The former zoo owner begged for a pardon from President Trump and has now urged Biden to do the same.

In a letter recently sent to the New York Post, he again maintained his innocence and has claimed that prison employees have made it difficult to communicate with the press.

He was recently transferred to a prison in North Carolina to receive treatment for prostate cancer.

Carole Baskin

Big Cat Rescue founder Carole Baskin appears in a scene from 'Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness.'

Big Cat Rescue founder Carole Baskin appears in a scene from ‘Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness.’
(Netflix)

Maldonado-Passage’s enemy, Carole Baskin, is still running Big Cat Rescue, but she’s less than pleased with the Netflix series.

After the release of the first season of “Tiger King,” Baskin shared a massive blog post on her website titled “Refuting Netflix Tiger King,” addressing segments in the series that she felt implied she was involved in the disappearance of her previous husband Don Lewis.

JOE EXOTIC SAYS TRUMP IS ‘A FOOL’ FOR NOT PARDONING HIM, CLAIMS ‘TIGER KING 2’ PROVES HIS INNOCENCE

Furthermore, she refused to participate in the show’s second season and tried to block Netflix from using other footage of her for new episodes.

After rising to fame in 2020, Baskin was featured as a competitor on “Dancing with the Stars.”

Mahamayavi Bhagavan “Doc” Antle

Bhagavan 'Doc' Antle. 

Bhagavan ‘Doc’ Antle. 
(Jonathan Wiggs/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)

Another big cat enthusiast known for a sensational wildlife park, Mahamayavi Bhagavan “Doc” Antle is still running The Institute of Greatly Endangered and Rare Species (T.I.G.E.R.S.).

The realization was made last year that Antle appeared onstage with Britney Spears during her iconic 2001 VMA performance. He could be seen in a cage with Spears and a “liger” — the breeding result of a female tiger and a male lion — at the beginning of the performance.

Jeff Lowe

Jeff Lowe has faced legal trouble since the first season of "Tiger King."

Jeff Lowe has faced legal trouble since the first season of “Tiger King.”
(Netflix)

Businessman Jeff Lowe appeared in “Tiger King” when he became a co-owner of Maldonado-Passage’s failing zoo. Eventually, Maldonado-Passage was booted as an owner, leaving Lowe in charge.

Since then, Lowe has faced a handful of legal woes, including his zoo being raided by authorities and being arrested for DUI.

‘TIGER KING’ STAR JOE EXOTIC TRANSFERRED TO FEDERAL MEDICAL CENTER FOR CANCER TREATMENT

When his park was raided, the government confiscated a large number of Lowe’s animals.

Lowe recently offered up recordings of conversations with federal agents regarding Maldonado-Passage to the former zoo owner’s attorney in exchange for help getting their animals back, he told TMZ.

John Finlay

Joseph Maldonado-Passage (right) with John Finlay (left).

Joseph Maldonado-Passage (right) with John Finlay (left).
(Netflix)

John Finlay was married to Maldonado-Passage for several years, though viewers eventually learned that he is straight and has since moved on from their relationship.

Finlay and his wife Stormy now run a Facebook page called “The Truth About John Finlay” where he posts regular updates about his new life, including a brand-new set of teeth.

Rick Kirkham

Rick Kirkham worked with Joseph Maldonado-Passage on creating a reality television show.

Rick Kirkham worked with Joseph Maldonado-Passage on creating a reality television show.
(Netflix)

Rick Kirkham was in charge of developing a reality television series based on Maldonado-Passage and spent a great deal of time filming at his zoo. The footage he had amassed perished in a fire.

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A Facebook page that appears to belong to Kirkham often tags Bodø, Norway, as his location, as well as his wife, Kristin E. Rosøy Kirkham.

Erik Cowie

Zookeeper Erik Cowie has died since filming the first season of "Tiger King."

Zookeeper Erik Cowie has died since filming the first season of “Tiger King.”
(Netflix )

Erik Cowie, one of Maldonado-Passage’s employees at the zoo, has passed away since filming the first season of “Tiger King.”

The late zookeeper was 53 when he was found dead on Sept. 3 in New York City.

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The New York City Office of Chief Medical Examiner confirmed to Fox News last month that Cowie’s manner of death was natural and that the cause was “acute and chronic alcohol use.”

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