Lucy was an extraordinary chimpanzee raised to believe she was human as part of a psychological experiment started in the 1960’s. When Lucy turned twelve, she began to act out violently. Her adoptive parents were no longer able to fulfill her needs and decided to send her to Africa where it became a tremendous struggle for Lucy to adapt to not only life without her family, but without the comforts of American suburbia. “Lucy” is a short animated film chronicling the many years of struggle Janis Carter experienced in order to help Lucy gain independence and freedom in her natural habitat.
Lucy managed to learn over 120 words in sign language and was capable of expressing complex human emotions that we thought were exclusive to the human species. Scientists compared her amazing intellect and abilities to that of an eight-year-old human child. Only…Lucy was not a child, she was an intelligent, fully mature adult chimpanzee.
Lucy was living in an in-between world – one where she was not accepted as either natural chimpanzee or fully human. No matter where she lived, Lucy would be trapped by her warped idea of herself.
Janis Carter’s strength and courage is awe inspiring. Hired to accompany Lucy to Africa for emotional support, Janis initially packed just enough for her intended three week stay. In those early days, she would eagerly mark the days on a calendar with X’s hoping to soon return to the comforts of home.
Janis, unwittingly brought into what she calls a “train wreck of a situation”, has to make some incredibly difficult choices about what is best for Lucy. Within the dark cloud of Lucy’s tragic struggles, a beautiful example of unconditional love shines through.